VietinBank to sell stake to foreign institution: report

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VietinBank, Vietnam's largest partly private lender by assets, will sell a 20 percent stake to a foreign institution this year, a local newspaper reported, citing an official of the bank.

The lender is expected to complete the sale in the fourth quarter, Chairman Pham Huy Hung said in a Vietnam Economic Times report, without revealing the name of the foreign partner. It plans to reduce state ownership to 51 percent within two years, he added.

Hung said the Hanoi-based bank now has a registered capital of VND26.2 trillion (US$1.25 billion). At the end of March, its assets grew by more than 30 percent to VND410 trillion from a year earlier.

Last month VietinBank was ranked by Forbes at number 1,989 in the list of 2,000 largest companies in the world. In terms of assets, it was ranked 904th.

The lender posted a net profit of nearly VND1.4 trillion in the first quarter, up 60 percent from the same period last year. Lending was its major source of income, accounting for 87 percent of the bank's total revenues, it said.

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