Even for those not interested in the hotel business, this news is important. Beijing-based insurer Anbang just cancelled its whopping all-cash bid for Starwood. That leaves Marriott and Starwood to iron-out details of a merger that was first announced last November. The Chinese firm obviously decided there are better targets for its cash resources. In the cross-border business, we have learned that there is almost always a more lucrative deal. Analysts were trying hard to validate the Anbang bid by tying it to gambling potential. In truth, the offer may have just been misguided enthusiasm for an unpredictable asset. Successful dealmaking is often reasonable dealmaking. ■
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