VN Dealbook: Lotte, VAMC, Song Da, French Embassy

Brand Logo from Lotte website

Foreign companies and government dominated the dealscape in Vietnam, this week. Korean corporation Lotte bought stake in a prime real estate at Ho Chi Minh city while the French government offered $21 million of hydraulic financing to the Vietnam government.

The nation’s asset management company has been allowed to use bonds of upto $3.75 billion this year, to purchase non-performing loans (NPL) from banks and realise the target of 3 per cent NPL ratio. Meanwhile, construction conglomerate Song Da Corporation exited from cement firms.

Lotte buys 70% of Diamond Plaza from Posco

 

Korean food, shopping and real estate group Lotte has purchased 70 per cent capital of the Diamond Plaza building in Ho Chi Minh City from its compatriot Posco, Lotte chairman Shin Dong Bin revealed in a meeting with the city people’s committee, as reported by the Saigon Times Online.

However, he did not reveal the value of this deal.

Diamond Plaza, a 22 storey building inaugurated in 2000, is the joint venture project between Construction Corporation No 1 and Posco Engineering and Construction. With an initial investment of $60 million and located in the heart of the city, the commercial apartment complex is one of the prime properties in the area.

Acquiring a majority of stake in the building has affirmed Lotte’s ambition to penetrate the Vietnamese real estate market through merger and acquisition (M&A)

In April last year, the five-star hotel Legend Saigon was re-branded Lotte Legend Saigon. Unofficial sources said that Lotte had acquired 70 per cent of the hotel from Hai Thanh – Kotobuki joint venture in 2013.

In addition, Lotte is also eyeing M&A in teh retail industry of Vietnam.

Song Da Corp fully exits two cement producers

 

Song Da Corporation is said to have divested its entire 39.8 per cent stake in Song Da Cement (SCC) on February 13. The stake translates into 751,700 shares in the company.

According to a previous report of SCC, two individual investors, Tran Thi Kim Thoa and Tran Duc Minh, had purchased the same amount of SCC shares, possibly the same block that was divested by Song Da Corp.

After the transaction, Thoa holds 19.07 per cent, while Minh holds 20.75 per cent in Song Da Cement.

The corporation also announced that on February 13, it fully exited Song Da Yaly Cement (SDY) by selling 2.4 million shares to four individuals, including both Thoa and Minh.

Market prices of SCC and SDY stocks were lower at VND3,900 ($0.18) and VND4,400 ($0.2) respectively,in comparison to their previous closing, at the time of filing this report.

VAMC issues up to $3.75b bonds for buying bad debts

 

The Vietnam Asset Management Company (VAMC), designated to handle banking bad debts, has been allowed to issue a maximum of VND80 trillion ($3.75 billion) worth of bonds for special purpose, said the State Bank of Vietnam.

The longest term of the bonds is five year, and VAMC is entitled to decide the specific term of each kind of bonds, matching the purpose of addressing each non-performing loan record of banks. After acquiring the non-performing loans from the banks, VAMC needs to closely coordinate with them in debt restructuring and support for borrowers.

VAMC was launched in July, 2013 to deal with the rising non-performing loans in the Vietnamese banking system. All banks with the bad debt ratio of above 3 per cent have to sell these debts to VAMC, for processing. According to the central bank, bad debt ratio in the system has reduced from 17 per cent in 2012 to around 4 per cent currently. The government’s target is to address it to 3 per cent this year.

France offers Vietnam $21m hydraulic financing

 

The French Embassy in Vietnam and the Vietnamese Ministry of Finance reached an agreement, last month, for the financing of the hydraulic infrastructure development in two provinces of Hung Yen and Binh Dinh, according to a document sent to DEALSTREETASIA today.

A concessional loan of 18.8 million euros ($20.7 million) for the development of hydraulic infrastructures and a grant of 300,000 euros ($331,000) for strengthening the capacity of water resources management have been given to the Vietnamese government.

The assistance is implemented through the French development agency AFD in Vietnam.

Since 1994, AFD has contributed to the financing of a number of hydraulic infrastructures, as well as to strengthen local stakeholder’s capacity for water management in Vietnam. Its operations demonstrates the utility of hydraulic infrastructure in term of economic development, poverty reduction, rapid benefits for farmers and strengthening capacity for project owners at provincial level.

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.

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.