The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, has sold nearly 57.4 million shares or a 1.54% stake at state-run Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Foreign Trade of Vietnam (Vietinbank), according to a filing to the Ho Chi Minh City Stock Exchange (HoSE).

Specifically, the IFC sold 18.14 million shares to reduce its holding in Vietnam’s third-largest bank by market value from 2.63% to 2.14%, while IFC Capitalization Fund offloaded 39.22 million shares, cutting its ownership to 4.34% in the Vietnamese lender from the previous 5.39%.

In a trading session on November 13, nearly 57.4 million shares of Vietinbank were purchased by foreign investors for VND1.23 trillion (US$52.96 million). Another 29 million shares of the bank worth VND612 billion (US$26.35 million) were also acquired by foreign investors on the same day.

Last year, Bloomberg reported the IFC was seeking a buyer for its 8% stake in Vietinbank after a seven-year partnership.

As of present, the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV), the country’s central bank, is the largest shareholder of Vietinbank with a 64.46% stake, followed by Japan’s largest bank MUFG with over 19.7%. The IFC remains a major shareholder of Vietinbank with a nearly 6.5% stake.

Total assets of Vietinbank as of September 2019 reached VND1,200 trillion (US$51.67 billion). Its total outstanding loans and deposits were VND917 trillion (US$39.48 billion) and VND865 trillion (US$37.23 billion), respectively.

The bad debt ratio of the bank declined from 1.58% as of late 2018 to the current rate of 1.56%. It earned a consolidated pre-tax profit of nearly VND8.5 trillion (US$365.89 million) in the first three quarters this year. Hanoitimes

Ngoc Thuy