GIC leads $690m investment in Vingroup retail unit

HANOI • A consortium led by GIC has paid US$500 million (S$690 million) for a minority stake in a retail unit of Vingroup JSC, according to a statement from the Singapore sovereign wealth fund on Monday.

The consortium has acquired a minority stake in VCM Services and Trading Development Joint Stock Company, a unit that Vingroup recently set up to oversee the operations of its supermarket and convenience store chains.

Vingroup and VCM Services & Trading Development JSC have "established themselves as reputable retail companies with attractive brands in Vietnam's fast-growing consumer market", GIC said in the statement. "As a long-term investor, GIC is confident in the growth outlook for disposable incomes and household consumption in Vietnam."

VCM operates VinMart+ and VinMart outlet stores in Vietnam. There are more than 108 VinMart supermarkets and some 1,700 VinMart+ convenience stores across the country, according to the firm's website.

Vietnam's economy is forecast to expand 6.7 per cent this year, one of the fastest among South-east Asian nations.

Stock in Ho Chi Minh City-listed Vingroup rose as much as 1.4 per cent, the biggest intra-day increase in more than two weeks. The shares are up almost 30 per cent since January.

Credit Suisse Group is the financial adviser to Vingroup. Vingroup will remain as the controlling shareholder of VCM after the transaction.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 12, 2019, with the headline 'GIC leads $690m investment in Vingroup retail unit'. Print Edition | Subscribe