On December 2, the news that Xu Jiayin, the founder of Chinese real estate development company Evergrande, jumped off a building, went viral at home and abroad, causing heated discussions. However, Evergrande insiders have denied the rumors, stressing that Xu had sent voice messages about the resumption of work and production to executives, and his death was impossible.
At 1:08 p.m. on December 2, the official Weibo “Yuexiu Public Security Bureau, Guangzhou” of the Police Department of Yuexiu District, Guangzhou City posted a message with only “Xu Jiayin,” sparking speculation. People wanted to know what had happened to him. Rumors spread quickly. There were rumors that Xu had jumped to his death.
There are also several long articles on WeChat about Xu’s life and career.
Chen Chaohua, vice president of Evergrande Group, also posted on Wechat, “No less than 50 people have come to ask me about the situation and I have no answer. According to personal judgment, it (Xu Jiayin’s death) is impossible! I don’t believe it either.”
Sina said Evergrande’s person in charge of the Zhengzhou area told the media that the company is currently operating normally and has not heard any news. Another Evergrande employee said that what they know of Xu he wouldn’t commit suicide.
In addition, according to Sohu, Jiemian News, and other Chinese media, on the morning of December 2, an employee reported work to Xu Jiayin, and around 1:00 p.m., Xu also sent a voice message to a group of executives, saying “Strengthen the resumption of work and production”! However, according to Sina, Evergrande’s 3:30 p.m. was canceled. But this news has not been confirmed by the company.
The news seems to confirm that the rumor of Xu’s death is not true.
However, another version was reported by NetEase. Sources familiar with the matter said that Xu left on the morning of December 2 and he was about to jump from the second floor but creditors stopped him. And they went back and forth for hours. Xu’s secretary informed the police, the fire department, and the police then arrived with a life net. Xu immediately jumped, he was very happy, because he could use this method to get away from the creditors, and at the same time spread the news that he jumped from the building. Then he held the afternoon meeting. And that’s how the Yuexiu District Police Office posted “Xu Jiayin,” showing they had nothing else to say. An informed source said that calling the police and forcing them to watch the drama play out was a waste of resources. All Xu wanted was to use jumping to force creditors, settle bank debts, and for local authorities to reclaim land.
The Weibo post from the police or “Xu Jiayin” can longer be found.
According to Sound of Hope, this incident has attracted the attention of many netizens. One mocked, “Jumping from the second floor, is this a high jump or a long jump?”
Some netizens called for Xu to quickly appear to refute the rumors.
“Evergrande Corporation owes trillions of yuan, along with an unfinished car project, how can they repay it? Chinese entrepreneurs have many ways to deal with such predicaments. Those who are familiar with Chinese history would have guessed it.”
Evergrande Group has domestic debt of 2 trillion yuan (about $285 billion). According to a report by Bloomberg, the Chinese regime regulator urged Xu to use his personal assets to pay off the debts. He has since sold luxury homes and private jets in China and Hong Kong. In October, there was a report that his 4 billion yuan mansion (about $570 million) in London, was also going on the block. According to the British “Financial Times” citing people familiar with the matter, the mansion has been scheduled for sale.