Samsung Life Insurance is seeking opportunities to enter Vietnam by pouring capital into Baoviet Life, the biggest insurance company in Southeast Asia.
|Samsung Life has set eyes on Baoviet Life |
Newswire Koreatimes stated that Samsung’s insurance company is negotiating to buy Baoviet Life’s shares. “We can't comment on details at this point, but it is true the discussion is underway with Baoviet Life,” said a Samsung Life Insurance official. “There are hurdles to be addressed regarding some legal issues with the Vietnamese government.”
Baoviet Life is the biggest local life insurance company with a staff of nearly 200,000 and 75 branches across the country. The company is leading the Vietnamese insurance market with 18.9 per cent of the market share, followed by Prudential and AIA.
Several media agencies stated that Samsung Life is seeking to buy 20 per cent of Baoviet Life’s shares.
The local insurer is fully owned by Bao Viet Holdings, in which the local government owns 72 per cent. The firm is listed on the Ho Chi Minh City bourse, with market capitalisation of $2.65 billion.
The company reached VND41 trillion ($1.78 billion) in revenue in 2018 and its total assets hit VND100 trillion ($43.47 billion).
The holding company has yet to allow foreign firms to acquire shares of its life insurance unit to date, but such a stance is expected to change soon since the Vietnamese government is pushing its plan to privatise most state-owned companies. Samsung Life's move is in line with the Moon Jae-in administration's drive to strengthen its presence in the Southeast Asian region through its signature New Southern Policy.
By Hoang Van