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Vietnam: Korean investors snap up stakes in local insurers

Source: Asia Insurance Review | Jan 2019

Several Korean insurance companies have expanded their operations to the Vietnamese insurance market through mergers and acquisitions, with the latest by KB Insurance, which last month announced it planned to buy a 17% stake in Bao Minh Insurance, the third largest non-life insurer in Vietnam. 
Including KB Insurance, in the past three years, four Korean insurers have become or would be strategic shareholders of Vietnamese, with shareholdings of 17-37% of chartered capital.
The other three Korean insurers and their M&A deals are: DB Insurance, the second largest non-life insurer in South Korea, bought a 37% stake in Vietnam’s Post & Telecommunications Insurance in 2015. In 2017, Samsung Fire & Marine Insurance bought a 20% stake in Petrolimex General Insurance. Last November, Hyundai Marine & Fire Insurance announced it would buy a 25% stake in VietinBank Insurance. 
Korean insurers are venturing into Vietnam because the Korean insurance market is becoming saturated while the emerging Vietnamese market is showing robust growth. Vietnam is also a country with a large population, and the penetration rate is still low. A 
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