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China's biggest fast-food company becomes a takeover target

Photo by Vincent Isore/IP3/Getty Images

Private equity firm Hillhouse Capital is in early talks to lead a takeover offer for Yum China, a New York-listed company that is the exclusive operator of KFC and Pizza Hut stores in mainland China, according to The Information.

Why it's a big deal: Yum China is the country's largest fast-food purveyor, with over 8,000 stores.

Deal size: Yum China, which was spun out of Yum Brands (NYSE: YUM) in 2016, saw its market cap soar to nearly $14 billion on the news.

Bottom line: "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." — Yunan Zhang & Juro Osawa, The Information