Bank of America has joined other investment banks, such as Citigroup and Morgan Stanley, in telling bankers to cease work on transactions with Chinese conglomerate HNA Group, multiple news outlets are reporting Thursday, citing an internal email and sources familiar with the matter.
The decision was reportedly driven by concerns about HNA Group’s ownership structure and debt levels. Sources told Bloomberg that the murky corporate structure is an obstacle to getting internal approval from “know your customer committees”.
The decision specifically affects deals still being worked on, such as a planned Singapore IPE for HNA Commercial REIT. Sources also told Bloomberg that the assessment of comfort level with a firm is fluid so the decision could change in the future.