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HNA to sell Hilton stake

China’s aviation and tourism conglomerate HNA Group plans to sell some or all of its stake in Hilton Worldwide, according to a regulatory filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

The company, which owns Hainan Airlines and several other carriers, purchased a 25 per cent stake in the hotel giant less than two years ago for around US$6.5 billion, becoming its biggest shareholder. Today, it owns 26.1 per cent of Hilton.

According to Reuters, HNA has been offloading assets in recent months under financial pressure stemming from a large amount of debt. The company took out huge loans last year, including one to purchase the Hilton stake.

Reuters reports that HNA may face restrictions on the sale, including the need to obtain approval from a majority of Hilton’s board. Details of HNA’s exact plans for offloading its shares have not been released and Hilton has yet to comment on the news.

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