China’s biggest technology and internet groups including Alibaba, Tencent and Baidu will join a list of companies investing $11.7bn in China Unicom, the country’s second-largest wireless telecom operator, in an attempt to revitalize the state-owned group with private capital. A long list of private and state investors will buy up 35.19% of the company’s Shanghai-listed unit China United Network Communications, the Financial Times reports. China Unicom’s shareholding in the unit will be 36.67%. While the investors include some of China’s top technology brands, such as e-commerce giant JD.com and ride-hailing group Didi Chuxing, it also will bring several large state-owned companies into the picture. China Life, the country’s largest life insurance group and a state-controlled company, will own 10.22% of Unicom when the transaction is completed, making it the largest investor included in the scheme. Since 2013, China has experimented with so-called “mixed ownership reform,” or allowing private capital into state-owned companies.
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