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U.S. bars $1.2 billion Chinese acquisition of MoneyGram

Staff Writer |
Chinese billionaire Jack Ma has dropped his bid to buy U.S. money transfer company MoneyGram after Washington rejected the $1.2 billion deal.

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MoneyGram International and Ma's Ant Financial Services Group failed to gain approval from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States despite efforts to respond to its concerns, MoneyGram CEO Alex Holmes said.

The panel reviews proposed foreign acquisitions of U.S. companies on national security grounds.

The failure is a setback to Ma's ambitions to expand into global markets.

MoneyGram shares fell 6.8 percent in after-hours trading to $12.40 a share.

"The geopolitical environment has changed considerably since we first announced the proposed transaction with Ant Financial nearly a year ago," Holmes said.

"Despite our best efforts to work cooperatively with the U.S. government, it has now become clear that CFIUS will not approve this merger."

The grounds for possible CFIUS objections were not immediately clear.

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