HONG KONG, July 7 (Reuters Breakingviews) - China’s Twitter-like social-media platform has denied a Reuters report read more that its founder is planning to take it private at an 80% premium. That will not stop holdout investors in parent company Sina from pricking their ears. They’re battling for a better deal from Charles Chao, chairman of both the web portal and Weibo (WB.O), whose $2.6 billion buyout offer in September undervalued Sina’s 45% Weibo stake by about $700 million.
Sina delisted in March, forcing unhappy shareholders to pursue a better price via Cayman Islands courts – a process increasingly familiar to investors in U.S.-listed Chinese buyout targets. When Chao first made his Sina bid, Weibo shares traded at $32. They closed near $58 on Tuesday, after Reuters reported a bid could reach $100 a share. Despite Chao’s and Weibo’s protestations that nothing’s afoot, the valuations mentioned will only fuel the determination of those who have taken their fight to George Town. (By Jennifer Hughes)
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