South Korea's Woori Bank to open subsidiary in Vietnam

By An Hong   August 4, 2016 | 03:33 pm GMT+7

Vietnam is opening up its banking industry to foreign players.

Woori Bank has received preliminary approval from Vietnam's central bank to open a subsidiary in the Southeast Asian country, the bank said in a statement on Tuesday.

Woori Bank already has branches in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, and plans to quickly expand its operations with three new branches in Vietnam this year. In a bid to gain a strong foothold in the market, Woori Bank hopes to increase its network to 20 branches in the next few years.

The bank is set to launch the Hanoi-based subsidiary around October this year with an ambitious plan to become one of the top foreign banks in Vietnam.

The bank said it is going to introduce its credit card services in the first half of 2017 and mobile banking service Wibbe Bank in a move to diversify its sales channels and expand its local customer base.

In a bid to break into Asia’s top 10 financial institutions and the top 50 in the world, Woori Bank expects 30 percent of its revenue to come from overseas markets.

South Korean banks are looking at overseas markets in search of new sources of profit as domestic demand nears saturation.