January 31, 2018 / 2:57 AM / 6 months ago

CORRECTED-China's Leshi Internet flags $1.8 bln loss for 2017, citing LeEco cash crunch

(Corrects fifth paragraph to show announcement was made to Shenzhen stock exchange, not Hong Kong stock exchange)

HONG KONG, Jan 31 (Reuters) - Chinese video-streaming firm Leshi Internet Information & Technology said it expects a net loss of 11.6 billion yuan ($1.83 billion) for 2017, citing a cash crunch at embattled technology conglomerate LeEco that hurt its revenues.

Leshi had reported a profit of 554.8 million yuan in 2016.

It was once the main listed unit of LeEco which was founded by Jia Yueting. Last year, property developer Sunac China became Leshi’s second-largest shareholder and Jia subsequently resigned as chairman and CEO from the company but remains its largest shareholder.

Leshi is trying to recover debt owed by Jia. It said last week it is seeking equity stakes in the car businesses of Jia for debt owed by him and his companies amounting to as much as 7.5 billion yuan ($1.17 billion).

Leshi flagged the expected loss for 2017 in a statement to the Shenzhen stock exchange on Tuesday evening.

The announcement sent Leshi’s shares plunging by the daily limit of 10 percent on Wednesday, the sixth consecutive day they have tumbled the maximum allowed since resuming trading a week ago following a 9-month suspension. ($1 = 6.3245 Chinese yuan renminbi) (Reporting by Sijia Jiang; Editing by Anne Marie Roantree and Muralikumar Anantharaman)

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