Helena Lyng Blak
10 weeks ago

Evergrande: One of the biggest fraud cases in Chinese history

The property giant and its founder have been accused of inflating revenues.
Aerial view of residential properties in China
Fabio Nodari / Shutterstock.com

In 2021, the Chinese property giant Evergrande had amassed more than $300 billion in liabilities, borrowing money to fund the more than 1,300 real estate projects the company was behind. It was then declared to be in default after missing key repayment deadlines.

In August 2023, Evergrande filed for bankruptcy protection in the US. Under Chapter 15, its US assets could be protected as Evergrande worked on restructuring its debt as the world’s most heavily indebted property developer.

In September 2023, Evergrande’s founder and chairman, Hui Ka Yan (who is also known as Xu Jiayin), was placed under police surveillance.

In January 2024, a Hong Kong court ordered the liquidation of Evergrande.

Now, in March 2024, the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) has accused Evergrande and its founder of inflating revenues by $78 billion in the two years leading up to the firm defaulting on its debt, as reported by the BBC.

Evergrande, also called “the poster child of China’s real estate crisis”, is primarily known as a real estate developer. However, the Evergrande Group also has business interests within the fields of EVs, consumer goods, and, according to the BBC, owns a controlling stake in one of China’s biggest football teams.

The company has been fined $580 million, while Hui Ka Yan, once China’s richest man, has been personally fined $6.5 million.

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