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Asia Venture Capital

Hillhouse Eyes Buyout of KFC Operator Yum China

One of China’s most prominent tech investors, Hillhouse Capital Group, is in talks to acquire Yum China, the country’s biggest fast-food operator, according to three people briefed on the matter.

Yum China, whose shares are listed on the New York Stock Exchange with a market capitalization of nearly $13 billion, operates more than 8,000 KFC and Pizza Hut restaurants across mainland China. The company was spun off from U.S.-based Yum Brands in 2016. A takeover led by Hillhouse, known for its early bets on Tencent and Didi Chuxing, could accelerate Yum China’s efforts to outfit its brick-and-mortar stores with high-tech initiatives that appeal to Chinese millennials.