Vietnam’s leading oil retailer seeks multiple partners

By Dat Nguyen   December 20, 2018 | 05:28 am PT
Vietnam’s leading oil retailer seeks multiple partners
Foreign buyers are showing interest in the stakes of PV Oil. Photo by Reuters
Vietnam’s second-largest oil retailer, PV Oil, is seeking multiple buyers, instead of a single strategic investor, for a 44.72 percent stake.

Although many investors expressed interest in becoming strategic partners with PetroVietnam Oil (PV Oil), including British-Dutch oil company Shell, South Korea’s SK Energy, and Idemitsu, a Japanese petroleum company, complicated administrative procedures have discouraged them, analysts say.

PV Oil requires a strategic partner to hold the stake for at least 10 years.

According to a new and revised divestment plan for PV Oil, the company is expected to raise at least $300 million from the divestment, the Nikkei Asian Review quoted Cao Hoai Duong, CEO of PV Oil, as saying.

The bidding is expected to start in 2019.

Last December, Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue had approved that state-owned PetroVietnam, the parent company of PV Oil, would reduce its ownership in PV Oil to 35.1 percent by selling a 44.72 stake to strategic investors.

In January this year, VND4.18 trillion ($184 million) was raised through the sale of a 20 percent stake in PV Oil in an initial public offering (IPO).

Vietnam maintains a 49 percent cap on foreign ownership limit in PV Oil.

PV Oil runs 540 filling stations on its own and has about 3,000 locations operated by agents, mostly in northern Vietnam, as well as about 120 gas stations in Laos.

PetroVietnam is one of the three biggest state-owned groups in Vietnam and a major contributor to state coffers.

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