Vietnamese commercial lender Ho Chi Minh Development Bank (HDBank) will offload a 49 per cent stake in its financial arm, HDFinance, to Japanese investor Credit Saison Co Ltd, as approved by the State Bank of Vietnam.
The financial company will be renamed as HD Saison Finance.
HDBank will reduce its holding to 50 per cent; one per cent is owned by Ho Chi Minh City Securities Company.
The central bank has also approved to change the legal form of HDFinance from a one member limited liability company to a limited liability form with two or more members.
Official announcement from the Vietnamese bank stated: that this move will make HD Saison Finance, a leading company in Vietnam’s retail finance sector. “The collaboration between a dynamic Vietnamese commercial bank and Japan’s biggest credit service provider will help promote the financial market through diversifying consumer lending products,” the bank wrote in an announcement.
HD Saison Finance is expected to attract customers with a spate of card services and lending products, which will help strengthen its foothold in the local market and contribute to the consumption power of the economy.
The ambition is not to stop there, the partnership includes an expansion plan to other countries in the ASEAN region, like Myanmar and Cambodia.
Credit Saison has already made an appearance in China, Indonesia and Singapore.
The largest credit card issuer in Japan, affiliated with Mizuho Financial Group, Credit Saison focuses on leasing, credit guarantee and installment sales. It penetrated the Vietnamese market by opening a representative office in Hanoi in 2012 then establishing a subsidiary a year later to conduct consulting business.
Meanwhile, HDBank acquired French-owned Société Générale Vietnam Finance Company, the first wholly foreign-owned financial firm in Vietnam, to transform it into HDFinance.
The bank has become larger after the acquisition of DaiABank in the same year. It has a charter capital of VND8.1 trillion ($376.7 million) and, according to the latest financial statement, a net profit of VND24.7 billion ($1.15 million) in the second quarter of 2014.