The financial woes continue for electronics retailer and wannabe tech manufacturer LeEco as the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) has ordered the founder of the company to return to China to settle up a mountain of debt that has been amassed. The order directs Jia Yueting to return to China no later than December 31st. This latest attempt by the CSRC comes after a more polite request was issued in September – a request that Jia seems to have ignored if not outright avoided.
In addition to the request from September, Jia was added to a an official blacklist maintained by Chinese authorities for individuals who default on their debt. All of the moves are part of how China tries to deal with the inevitable failures that come with the country’s move to embrace some capitalistic concepts.
In the latest order, the CSRC says:
“Firms you control owe huge amounts to listed companies, which has not yet been returned. This behavior seriously harms the legal rights of listed firms and the personal interests of a wide range of investors.”
LeEco is believed to owe approximately $1.5 billion to creditors. Sources say Jia has a net worth of approximately $3.8 billion, but it is unclear how much of that is in liquid assets that could be used to settle the debts. All of that assumes Jia complies with the order and even tries to make an attempt to settle up. At present, Jia’s whereabouts are unknown and there have been no signs of Jia trying to wrap things up with LeEco and put them behind him.