Prudential Financial ropes in Goldman for South Korean unit sale

The Prudential Financial Inc. Plaza stands in Newark, New Jersey, U.S., on Thursday, Jan. 25, 2018. Photographer: Victor J. Blue/Bloomberg

Prudential Financial Inc, the No. 1 U.S. life insurer, has hired Goldman Sachs to explore the possibility of selling its South Korean unit, which could fetch about 2 trillion won ($1.70 billion), Korea Economic Daily reported.

A sale of the unit would see the U.S. insurer exit the South Korean market after about 30 years since it first entered.

South Korea’s large financial firms like KB Financial Group and Woori Financial Group, as well as private equity funds are named as potential buyers of the insurer, the report said.

KB and Woori officials denied that any acquisition talks were underway.

A spokesman at Prudential Life Insurance Company of Korea said: “We do not comment on potential transactions.”

A Goldman Sachs spokesman based in Seoul declined to comment.

The Prudential unit reported a fall in operating profit of 12% to 220 billion won last year, compared to a year earlier, according to its stock exchange filing.

Reuters

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In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

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  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.