South Korea’s provincial banking group JB Financial Group said Dec. 16 that its commercial banking arm Kwangju Bank had signed a deal to acquire Vietnamese investment bank Morgan Stanley Gateway Securities for 382.4 billion Vietnamese dong ($16.5 million).
Kwangju Bank, wholly owned by JB Financial, will also carry out a 600 billion Vietnamese dong capital increase in Hanoi-based MSGS, according to a regulatory filing.
JB Financial chairman eyes M&As in Korea, SE Asia
If the deal closes, Jeonju-headquartered JB Financial will be able to broker real estate and infrastructure investment in Vietnam for Korean investors. Also, JB Financial plans to underwrite Vietnamese firms’ issuance of mezzanine instruments such as convertible bonds and bond warrants, as well as merger and acquisition opportunities, through the acquired company.
The move will enable JB Financial to “diversify the group’s revenue source in the long run,” JB Financial Chairman Kim Ki-hong said in a statement.
JB Financial has undertaken a series of M&A deals in the Southeast Asian market, and as a result the Phnom Penh Commercial Bank and JB Capital Myanmar have been under the JB Financial umbrella since 2016.
JB Financial’s board approved the plan on Dec. 13 to sign a stake sales and purchase agreement with the joint venture between the US investment bank and the Vietnamese brokerage house.
The stake transfer is expected to take place in January, according to a regulatory filing, but the plan may face delay due to the need for financial regulatory approval from Korea and Vietnam.
Founded in 2006, MSGS operates with some 300 billion Vietnamese dong.
By Son Ji-hyoung (firstname.lastname@example.org)