Firm ex­pects to raise at least US$270m from 40pc share dis­posal

New Straits Times - - Business / World - Bloomberg

PETROVIETNAM Oil Corp (PV Oil), Viet­nam’s sole crude ex­porter, said it’s in talks to sell as much as 40 per cent to strate­gic in­vestors and ex­pects to nar­row down to a list of about five po­ten­tial bid­ders for the gov­ern­ment this month.

PV Oil ex­pected to raise at least US$270 mil­lion (RM1.2 bil­lion) from one or two in­vestors from the stake sale, said pres­i­dent and chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Cao Hoai Duong at the com­pany’s head­quar­ters, here.

About 10 po­ten­tial strate­gic in­vestors, in­clud­ing “ma­jor oil com­pa­nies” from Ja­pan, South Korea, Thai­land, Viet­nam and the Mid­dle East, had ap­plied to buy the shares, he said.

PV Oil would also of­fer as much as 15 per cent of its shares in an ini­tial pub­lic of­fer­ing (IPO) in the first half, he said, adding that the stake sale to strate­gic in­vestors would oc­cur si­mul­ta­ne­ously with or af­ter the IPO.

The com­pany would list shares at an un­de­ter­mined time on the Ho Chi Minh City Stock Ex­change af­ter the IPO, he said.

“We are look­ing for good strate­gic part­ners, so we can make an­other merg­ers and ac­qui­si­tion suc­cess,” said Duong on Tues­day, re­fer­ring to past ac­qui­si­tions to ex­pand its re­tail net­work.

The sale of shares would in­ject pri­vate in­vest­ment in the state­con­trolled pe­tro­leum in­dus­try and ac­cel­er­ate gov­ern­ment plans to open up the oil and gas sec­tor, a mar­ket that’s worth US$5.9 bil­lion, ac­cord­ing to My Truong, Hanoi-based re­search man­ager at Ho Chi Minh City Se­cu­ri­ties Corp.

“PV Oil’s IPO is con­sid­ered the most at­trac­tive one this year,” said My. “Al­most all fi­nan­cial in­vestors, both in­sti­tu­tions and in­di­vid­u­als, are look­ing for­ward to have a piece of the cake.”

PV Oil, which is the coun­try’s sec­ond-largest pe­tro­leum re­tailer, is also seek­ing to ex­pand its mar­ket share of 22 per cent, trail­ing be­hind larger com­peti­tor Viet­nam Na­tional Pe­tro­leum Corp, which has about half, ac­cord­ing to Saigon Se­cu­ri­ties Inc es­ti­mates.

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