Melbourne-headquartered bank ANZ announced on Friday that it will sell its retail banking business in Vietnam to Shinhan Bank Vietnam, after speculations about several financial institutions in the fray to buy the asset.
ANZ said it expects to complete the sale of the Vietnam-based retail division to the South Korean bank by the end of this year. The sale will include transfer of all eight branches located in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City and ongoing roles of the entire retail staff.
The transaction will help ANZ, one of the top four corporate banks in the region as per Greenwich Associates, focus on its institutional banking ops, after having sold the retail and wealth business in five other Asian countries to DBS last year, it said.
The bank did not disclose the value of the deal, but said that the division served 125,000 customers in Vietnam, and included A$320 million in lending assets and A$800 million in deposits. The premium to book value for the sale was not material to the ANZ Group, it added.
“The sale of our retail business is in line with our strategy to simplify the bank and improve capital efficiency. It allows us to focus resources on our largest business in Asia – institutional banking – where we are a top four corporate bank supporting regional trade and capital flows. We have a long history in Vietnam and we will be maintaining our presence through our Institutional Bank in Vietnam which will continue to support our corporate clients in the Greater Mekong Region,” said ANZ Group Executive, International, Farhan Faruqui.
Last month, Vietnamese media citing sources had said that five local and international lenders had been keen on acquiring ANZ’s retail business in the country. DEALSTREETASIA later learnt that Vietnam International Bank (VIB) was one of the suitors.
Online articles also reported that the Aussie bank was examining the sale of retail units in the Philippines, Cambodia and Lao, along with Vietnam, in separate deals with last year’s $80 million divestment to DBS.
ANZ will reportedly dive into the capital and bond markets, cash-flow management, corporate and investment banking.
Its partner for the Vietnam deal, Shinhan Bank Vietnam, entered this Southeast Asian market in 1993 with an office in Ho Chi Minh City. In 2008, it was licensed to set up a 100 per cent owned subsidiary in Vietnam before acquiring remaining stake at the local joint venture with Vietcombank in 2011.
The latest moves to boost retail ops by the Korean institution include a fintech initiative called Shinhan Future’s Lab, which was launched in December 2016, and a partnership with Vietnamese payment gateways operator VNPAY two months earlier.