South Korea’s GS25 to open convenience stores in Việt Nam

First South Korean convenience store chain to enter VietnamQuoc Hung HCMC – GS Retail Co Ltd, a South Korean convenience store chain operator, is about to penetrate the Vietnamese market under a partnership with a local company. The Korean firm struck a deal with Son Kim Group to set up a joint venture with a plan to launch its first GS25 store in HCMC later this year, according to the Yonhap news agency. GS Retail, which holds a 30% stake in the joint venture, is expected to sign a master franchise agreement with its Vietnamese partner later to receive royalties on trademark rights and operation. Vietnam will become GS Retail’s first foreign market, according to the Inside Retail Asia. “We received requests from many countries, including China and other Southeast Asian countries, to export our brand. After months of research, we concluded that Vietnam has the largest potential for growth,” said a GS Retail spokesman. GS Retail, according to the Business Korea, chose Vietnam as its first overseas market, as the Vietnamese economy is growing rapidly and those aged 35 or less take up no less than 57% of its population, a demographic seen as favorable as youth tend to most likely shop at convenience stores. Korean media says an increasing number of Korea’s convenience store chains are creating a presence in overseas markets. As their domestic convenience store market is reaching a saturation point, they are exploring foreign markets to secure business growth. Vietnam’s large population and rising consumer…... [read more]

VietNamNet Bridge - Cash from China and Chinese-speaking territories has been and will continue to be the main funding source for the Vietnamese real estate market, analysts say. The investor of an apartment project in District 2, HCM City, revealed that he sold 200 apartments within a short time, despite the fact that only the foundation of the building has been completed. How could the investor sell so many apartments under the current economic climate, with the real estate market still hibernating with very few successful transactions? Who were the buyers of the apartments? The answers to the questions could be found at a meeting between the investor and the clients. Of the first six clients, two were foreigners. One of the two said he was from Taiwan. He bought five apartments. The other, from Singapore, bought three. One could see in the list of customers of a resort real estate project in Da Nang that prior to 2012, the buyers were mostly from Hanoi, the northern provinces and HCM City. However, things have changed notably in the last two years. The real estate developer realized sales of $12 million from early 2013 to the end of the first quarter of 2014, and most of the buyers were from China, Hong Kong, Singapore and Macau. These are just a very small part of the huge capital that investors from China and the Chinese speaking community are bringing to Vietnam. Analysts are noting that something which no one imagined before is…... [read more]

VietNamNet Bridge - The year 2013 witnessed a series of successful merger and acquisition (M&A) in the real estate sector. The biggest deal was valued at VND9.8 trillion. Vincom Center A in HCM City In the deal worth VND9.823 trillion, Vingroup, which is owned by the Vietnamese richest stock millionaire Pham Nhat Vuong, transferred the project to VIPD, the Vietnam Infrastructure and Property Development Group, making a profit of VND4.3 trillion. Vincom Center A is located at No. 53 Le Thanh Toan, 171 Dong Khoi, 6A Le Loi and 116 Nguyen Hue in the central district No 1 in HCM City. It's comprised of six basements and 9 stories, including the three basements for car parking, while the other three basements and four stories have been used for shopping mall and amusement park. A five star hotel is situated on the 5-9th floors. Vincom Center A was inaugurated in October 2012. Warbug Pincus buys 20.02 percent of Vincom Retail's stakes The investment fund spent $200 million to acquire 20.02 percent of stakes in Vincom Retail in May 2013. Finance Asia noted that this is the biggest ever investment in a Vietnamese business made by an international private capital company. In 2013, Vingroup inaugurated two big shopping malls in Hanoi. Leading the retail property market segment, Vingroup now possesses 600,000 square meters of retail premises. Lotte Legend Saigon The South Korean investor has bought 70 percent of the hotel's stakes from Kotobuki Group at $62 million. The other 30 percent of…... [read more]

HA NOI (VNS)— Vietnamese real estate developer Son Kim Land has received a US$37 million investment from EXS Capital, an independent investment firm based in Hong Kong, according to director Trinh Bao Quoc. On top of that, EXS Capital may raise its investment up to $80 million in the future, Quoc told Viet Nam News yesterday. The HCM City-based company is the real estate arm of the Son Kim Group and is currently operating six development projects, including two large complex areas with apartments, offices and a commercial centre in District 2 in the city. "Money will be invested to develop the company's ongoing projects as well as buying other real estate projects," said Quoc. According to the co-founder and CEO of EXS Capital, Eric Solberg, the Vietnamese company is selected because of its solid track record and attractive projects in the pipeline, especially the planned metro line and metro stations in District 2 in HCM City. Although the real estate sector in Viet Nam is fairly stagnant at the moment, Solberg believes in the company's investment. "Real estate development is a long-term game. Anything we start to build today will not reach the market for a couple of years. We have great faith in the Vietnamese economy over the long term, so as the market is relatively weak at the moment, it is a very logical time to buy in," he said. "We believe Son Kim Land's projects will work quite well, even if the current market conditions continue.…... [read more]

VietNamNet Bridge - High ranking executives of the US McDonald's came to Vietnam in 2012, a signal showing that the giant was eyeing the Vietnamese market. And it has become more obvious that the fast food chain will enter the Vietnamese market. If Starbucks is thought to create a new face to the Vietnamese coffee market, then the presence of McDonald's is believed to force the rivals like KFC, Jollibee or Lotteria to reconsider their business plans. It's simply because McDonald's, with the shops in 119 countries, is really a powerful empire to confront with. In August 2012, local newspapers caught the attention from the public when reporting that senior executives of McDonald's were here in Vietnam to seek suitable partners for a franchising contract. No strong commitments were made after the working visit, but the US fast food chain left some noticeable information that it would officially be present in Vietnam in two years, and that it would open 100 McDonald's shops in Vietnam, of which the first one would be in HCM City. In late February, the news that McDonald's was negotiating with three Vietnamese partners heated up the fast food market. According to Dr Ly Quy Trung, the big brands like McDonald's, Burger King, or 7-Eleven rarely conducts single-unit franchise, while they prefer area development franchise. There has been no information about how the negotiations have ended up and who of the three McDonald's would choose. It is also likely that McDonald's would franchise to at least…... [read more]

Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) for financial institutions are luring in numerous domestic and international investors due to the attractiveness of the rapidly developing, $26.55-billion consumer finance market. Concerted action needed for M&A breakthrough Vietnamese real estate market continues showing irresistible appeal to foreign investors M&A in real estate hikes early in year   HDFinance was renamed HD Saison Finance after Japanese Credit Saison acquired 49 per cent ​Foreign investors show interest According to a source of VIR, after the takeover of ANZ Vietnam’s retail business, South Korean Shinhan Bank is planning to acquire a financial institution in Vietnam. This plan is aimed at expanding its business in the Vietnamese retail banking sector. In addition, the source revealed that not only Shinhan Bank, but two other Japanese investors are also negotiating to purchase 49 per cent of the stakes in two different Vietnamese financial institutions. At the end of last year, Shinsei Bank from Japan purchased a 49 per cent stake in Mcredit, the consumer finance arm of Military Bank. Afterwards, MCredit was renamed MB Shinsei Consumer Finance Limited Liability Company. Earlier, the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) allowed Ho Chi Minh City Development Bank (HDBank) to transfer 49 per cent of its capital in consumer finance company HDFinance to Japanese Credit Saison Co., Ltd. After the completion…... [read more]

Korea Development Bank (KDB) in mid-April signed a comprehensive cooperation agreement with Vietnam’s BIDV. Of equitized banks, BIDV now has the highest state’s ownership ratio, over 95%, which also means that the there is still room for foreign investors in the bank – 30% as stipulated by law. Since BIDV began listing its shares in 2014, the bank’s managers said it was looking for foreign partners and considering selling 25-30% of capital. BIDV’s CEO Phan Duc Tu recently confirmed that the bank wants to find foreign strategic partners. The biggest problem for the bank is that while it cannot sell stakes at prices lower than the market, investors want discount rates when buying a stake in large lots. Besides the South Korean partner, BIDV has one more partner, from Japan. Analysts commented that they may become strategic partners of the bank with the biggest total assets in Vietnam. Recently, Daegu, another large South Korean bank, signed a comprehensive cooperation agreement with Vietnam’s OCB, a joint stock bank. In the ROK, Daegu now holds 50% of the market share for providing loans to SMEs. According to OCB’s CEO Nguyen Dinh Tung, OCB hopes Daegu would give support to OCB in many different fields, from remittances, international payments to product and SME client development. In 2008, Shinhan became one of the first five 100% foreign owned banks licensed in Vietnam. In late 2011, to confirm its commitments to make long-term investment…... [read more]

Korea Development Bank (KDB) in mid-April signed a comprehensive cooperation agreement with Vietnam’s BIDV. Of equitized banks, BIDV now has the highest state’s ownership ratio, over 95%, which also means that the there is still room for foreign investors in the bank – 30% as stipulated by law. Since BIDV began listing its shares in 2014, the bank’s managers said it was looking for foreign partners and considering selling 25-30% of capital. BIDV’s CEO Phan Duc Tu recently confirmed that the bank wants to find foreign strategic partners. The biggest problem for the bank is that while it cannot sell stakes at prices lower than the market, investors want discount rates when buying a stake in large lots. Besides the South Korean partner, BIDV has one more partner, from Japan. Analysts commented that they may become strategic partners of the bank with the biggest total assets in Vietnam. Recently, Daegu, another large South Korean bank, signed a comprehensive cooperation agreement with Vietnam’s OCB, a joint stock bank. In the ROK, Daegu now holds 50% of the market share for providing loans to SMEs. According to OCB’s CEO Nguyen Dinh Tung, OCB hopes Daegu would give support to OCB in many different fields, from remittances, international payments to product and SME client development. In 2008, Shinhan became one of the first five 100% foreign owned banks licensed in Vietnam. In late 2011, to confirm its commitments to make long-term investment…... [read more]

Customers shop for fresh fruit and vegetables at AEON MALL in Hanoi’s Long Bien district (Photo: VNA) Hanoi (VNS/VNA) - The country’s total retail sales and services revenue reached 2.24 quadrillion VND (98.6 billion USD) in the first seven months of this year, a year on year increase of 10 percent. The revenue, excluding the price factor, gained a year-on-year increase of 8.7 percent in the first seven months, 0.3 percentage points higher than the growth rate in the first seven months of 2016, reported the General Statistics Office (GSO). Of these, revenue of retail sales reached the highest at 1.68 quadrillion VND (74 billion USD), accounting for the three-fourths of the total revenue, a year-on-year surge of 20 percent. GSO’s domestic trade expert Vu Manh Ha said growth in purchasing power of the people during the first seven months was due to surge in demand for accommodation and catering services in July because of high school graduation examinations. In addition, the volume of foreign and domestic tourists rose sharply in the summer months, Ha said. Therefore, the revenue from accommodation and catering services in July went up by 11.3 percent while the revenue from tourism and travelling services managed the highest growth rate at 15.1 percent. [Infographics: Vietnam's annual retail sales growth projected to reach 11.9 percent] During the first seven months, the total revenue from accommodation and catering services stood at 278.6 trillion VND, an increase of 11.6 percent against the…... [read more]

LONDON: Gold demand slumped 14 per cent in the first half of 2017 to hit the lowest level in eight years as US traders exited the haven investment, the World Gold Council said on Thursday (Aug 3). Gold didn't have a glittering first half of the year as demand dropped 14 per cent. (AFP/BERTRAND GUAY) Global demand dropped to 2,004 tonnes in the first six months of the year compared with the first half of 2016, the WGC said in its latest quarterly report. "The last time H1 demand was lower... was in 2009" when it totalled 1,853 tonnes, a spokeswoman confirmed to AFP. Most of the drop in demand came in the second quarter, with it sliding 10 per cent to 953.4 tonnes compared with the April-June period in 2016, the WGC added. John Mulligan, a Council director, noted US investors had exited exchange-traded funds (ETFs) for gold at a greater extent than their European peers, as the Federal Reserve embarks on a course of raising interest rates. "The European ETF investor is a lot less volatile, a lot more stable and a lot less likely to to-and-fro in terms of liquidation than their US counterparts," he said. ETFs allow investment without trading on the futures market. "Demand for the first half of 2017 was down 14 per cent compared to last year, but in some respects the market was…... [read more]




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