BIDV Insurance plans to list shares in Vietnam in 1st quarter

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BIDV Insurance Co., a unit of Bank for Investment & Development of Vietnam, plans to list its shares on the Ho Chi Minh City Stock Exchange by the end of March, Chief Executive Officer Pham Quang Tung said.

"The Securities Depository Center has agreed to deposit our shares with the ticker of BIC and we will submit the listing application to the exchange next week," Tung said by phone Friday. The company hasn't set the initial share price for its debut "but we expect it will be at least VND15,000 a share," he said.

The government raised VND129.2 billion ($6.6 billion) selling 11.5 million shares of the insurance company last August, according to the Hanoi Stock Exchange. Companies in Vietnam typically sell shares to the public, then list on the exchange later.

The benchmark VN Index of Vietnamese stocks has risen 7.2 percent so far this year after declining 2 percent in 2010. The gauge rose 1.5 percent to 519.50 Friday, the highest since May 14.

BIDV Insurance expects pretax profit to reach VND100 billion and revenue to be 1 trillion dong this year, Tung said, without providing comparable figures.

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