Vietnam Airlines to sell 3.47% stake in Nov float

Vietnam’s flagship air carrier – Vietnam Airlines – will sell 3.475% stake, equivalent to 49,009,008 shares of the company in its initial public offering (IPO) this month, the country’s transport ministry said in a directive.

The initial share price will be 22,300 Dong ($1.06) each, and the sale is set to take place on November 14 on the Hochiminh Stock Exchange (STC).

The company has not given a date for the listing. Unlike a regular IPOs, companies in Vietnam take several months to a year, to list their shares after the float.

Vietnam Airlines is also looking for strategic partners to sell about 20% stake in the company, said a Singapore-based banker, who is tracking the process, adding that between three to five players are likely to be interested in the carrier, which is a part of the Sky Team alliance.

In a recent report, the carrier’s consultant – BIDV Securities – said that the Vietnam Airlines prefers to have a foreign airline as a strategic partner, but then added that it was also open to offering this stake to financial investors from abroad.

Vietnamese local media, quoting officials from the airline, reported that the carrier has received interest from two strategic investors ahead of the IPO. The stake sale to the strategic investor is likely to be conclude by March 2015.

The airline, which boasts of a young 82-aircraft fleet and flies 52 international routes to 29 destinations in 17 countries, as well as 39 local routes to 21 cities within the country, plans to leverage its network to position Vietnam as a gateway to a host of other areas in the region (including China, Southeast Asia, Northeast Asia, North Pacific and Europe.)

It has ordered a fleet of A350-900s and B787-9s, which are slated to join service from the next year and will help it fly longer distances at reduced costs.

Vietnam Airlines has over 50% market share in the country, and has so far held its ground against competition from low-cost carrier VietJet. It is also a equity shareholder in budget carrier Jetstar Pacific.

Picture:Vietnam Airlines

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Singapore Reporter/s

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).

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

  • 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.