Lotte Vietnam, the operator of the namesake supermarket chain in the country, has recently submitted a proposal to become a 100 percent foreign invested company, according to the Ho Chi Minh City Department of Planning and Investment.
The company intends to buy the remaining 20 percent stake of the Vietnamese Minh Van Co.
Lotte’s total registered capital is currently US$65 million, or VND1.29 billion, according to its business license issued in October 2006.
Minh Van Co holds a 20 percent stake, worth $13 million, while Lotte Vietnam holds 80 percent, at $52 million.
The proposal is now pending approval from the city’s People’s Committee.
South Korea’s leading retailer entered the Chinese market in 2007 by re-buying the giant Makro supermarket chain, which was still operational at the time. The company then expanded its investment to Indonesia, also by purchasing the Makro system there.
The Korean giant has also planned to take over the Bien Hoa Confectionery JSC, a local confectioner widely known as Bibica, where Lotte, as a strategic partner, owns a 38 percent stake.
This year has seen many mergers and acquisitions in which foreign companies have sought to increase their stake in local firms to take over the latter.
For instance, Japanese food company Ezaki Glico bought shares from Kinh Do, a giant Vietnamese confectioner, and Nichirei Food bought shares from Cholimex Food.
Earlier this month Thailand’s Nawaplastic Industry announced plans to buy an additional 800,000 shares from Binh Minh Plastic, increasing its stake in the company to 20.38 percent.
Other cases include the Singapore-based Orchid Fund Private Limited, which owns a 9.81 percent stake of FPT, and CFR International SPA, which holds as much as 45.49 percent of Domesco, a medical equipment import-export company.