PetroVietnam Finance plans Q3 S'pore listing

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PetroVietnam Finance Corp (PVFC), an arm of Vietnam's state oil monopoly, plans to list shares on the Singapore stock exchange in the third quarter of this year, its chairman said Friday.

"PVFC will sell an 18 percent stake owned by PetroVietnam in the Singapore listing," Nguyen Dinh Lam told Reuters on the sidelines of a company meeting.

The share offering will cut PetroVietnam's stake to 60 percent from 78 percent now, Lam said in an interview, adding that over the longer term PetroVietnam planned to reduce it further to 40 percent.

PVFC currently has registered capital of VND5 trillion (US$270 million) and the firm plans to raise it to $1 billion by 2015.

Shares in PVFC lost VND700 to close at VND30,000 ($1.62) on Friday before it unveiled the plan for the Singapore listing.

Morgan Stanley, which owns 10 percent of PVFC, was advising the Vietnamese firm on the listing and its shares were expected to get a minimum price of $3 each, General Director Tong Quoc Truong told reporters at the meeting.

"Even though the laws do not ban the listing, so far there have been no precedents for Vietnamese companies that list in Singapore," Lam said.

He said Morgan Stanley may be interested in increasing its stake in PVFC after the Singapore listing.

Vietnam allows a foreign investor to own up to 15 percent in a domestic company but, depending on government approval, the ceiling can be raised to 49 percent.

PVFC needs to prepare the ground at home for its overseas listing and it has been organizing seminars for officials from the government, central bank and other relevant parties, Lam said.

Vietnam's biggest dairy firm, Vinamilk, has said it planned to list in Singapore, but the company has not given any date.

PVFC expected its gross profit to grow nearly 70 percent to VND1.03 trillion ($55.8 million) this year on revenue of VND5.06 trillion, it said in a statement.

Credit activities generated between 40 percent and 45 percent of PVFC's revenues, while investment brought in 30 percent and the rest came from financial services, director Truong said.

The company aims to beat its revenue and profit targets for 2010 by between 15-20 percent, with a focus on short-term investment projects and meeting funding demand in the country's energy sector, Truong said at the meeting.

Last year's gross profit beat its own projection by 53 percent, rising to VND611 billion, the company statement said.

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