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Agribank to delay IPO, sell off in-house financing   2008-01-25 - VNS

The Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Agribank) plans to equitise in the fourth quarter of next year, as opposed to the end of this year as previously stated.

HA NOI — The Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Agribank) plans to equitise in the fourth quarter of next year, as opposed to the end of this year as previously stated.

However, seven of the bank’s in-house companies will go public before the planned IPO.

In the first quarter of this year, the bank plans to sell its finance leasing company No 2 and its HCM City-based jewellery company.

The other five companies – finance leasing company No 1, its cash and coin printing company, Vung Tau trade and tourism company, Agribank Securities, and the Ha Noi-based jewellery company – will be equitised in stages during the second and third quarters.

General Director of Agribank Nguyen The Binh said the IPO was delayed to preserve the value of the bank and to reassess local-market demand.

Moreover, Agribank has the largest operation network in the country and will therefore take time to equitise, he said.

Ahead of the planned equitisation, the central bank ordered Agribank to streamline its operations.

However, the move to equitise may not be in the best interests of farmers in remote areas, said Agribank chairman Do Tat Ngoc.

At the end of last year, Agribank had capital worth VND295.05 trillion (US$18.44 billion), 31.6 per cent more than a year ago.


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