Ant Financial to try again for United States approval of MoneyGram deal

Ant Financial to try again for United States approval of MoneyGram deal”

China-based Ant Financial will make a third attempt for approval from the acquire MoneyGram International Inc., as road blocks have been put up by a secretive national security group for investors from China looking to buy USA companies.

Ant Financial, which operates China's biggest online payments platform Alipay, is now preparing to resubmit its application for review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), according to Bloomberg and Reuters which quoted people familiar with the matter.

This underscores the troubles buyers from China face in trying to convince the panel investigating foreign acquisitions to give its approval. These factors are also giving panel members pause, sources have said, as the USA weighs whether it wants to allow Chinese firms to own American companies - particularly those deeply involved in the financial system.

Both Ant Financial and MoneyGram filed for CFIUS approval soon after the deal was agreed upon, but this was not granted within the 75-day period.

Shares of Alibaba were climbing higher in late morning trading on Friday.

It is rare for CFIUS recommendations to halt a deal to make it to the president, because companies typically walk away from a transaction to avoid being branded a national security threat.

Before Trump, presidents had blocked only three deals because of national security concerns.

Chinese conglomerate HNA Group's acquisition of U.S. fund management firm SkyBridge Capital is also awaiting regulatory approval.

Chipmaker Broadcom Ltd, which has headquarters in Singapore as well as in San Jose, California, is also seeking approval to buy Brocade Communications Systems Inc, a supplier of semiconductors that connect phones and tablets to Wi-Fi networks.

Ant disputes the assertions that the security of the USA would be compromised, as it cited plans it has to maintain the headquarters of MoneyGram, its employees and management team in place in Dallas.

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