Kakao Bank shareholders enjoy a stock boon ahead of IPO

2020.09.08 14:58:06

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Shareholders of South Korea’s Kakao Bank are enjoying stock boon ahead of the much-anticipated IPO of the sole surplus-making online bank.

Kakao Bank, the banking subsidiary under the nation’s big tech Kakao Corp., announced in July that it will embark on IPO process to go public next year. Its shares trade at around 100,000 won ($84.12) in the over-the-counter market, commanding unofficial capitalization of around 40 trillion won. The value already surpasses established leading financial names like KB Financial Group with 15.9 trillion won market cap and Shinhan Financial Group with 13.9 trillion won.

The much-touted IPO has been boosting shares of Korea Investment Holdings owning a 4.9 percent stake in Kakao Bank. Korea Investment Holdings soared 19.1 percent on Monday to close at 82,200 won, after hitting a new 52-week high. The bullish momentum has taken a breather Tuesday, as its stock fell 3.77 percent to 79,100 won as of 2:00 p.m.

Shares of KB Financial Group that owns KB Kookmin Bank holding a 9.9 percent stake in Kakao Bank also jumped 3.5 percent to 38,250 won on Monday. KB Kookmin Bank invested in the online-only bank to find new business opportunities by sharing platforms, according to sources. KB Financial shares declined 1.05 percent to 37,850 on Tuesday afternoon.

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The country’s leading online bookstore operator Yes24 reached a record high of 14,300 won on Monday. It owns around 2 percent stake in the bank through the equity investment it began in March 2016 with an aim to create synergy effect with its online bookstore business. Its holding entity Hansae Yes24 Holdings also surged 13.9 percent to 5,890 won on Monday.

On Tuesday afternoon, Yes24 went down 1.75 percent to 14,050 won and Hansae Yes24 Holdings fell 4.75 percent to 5,610 won.

Shares of Netmarble, one of the biggest beneficiaries of this year’s mega IPOs, and Kakao were down on Monday due to profit-taking from previous gains. Kakao fell 2.5 percent to 392,000 won and Netmarble tumbled 2 percent to 193,500 won.

Netmarble shares have been flying high thanks to its smart equity investments. It holds a 3.9 percent stake in Kakao Bank and 5.6 percent stake in Kakao Games, another affiliate of Kakao that drew overwhelming demands from investors for its IPO slated on Thursday. It also owns a 25 percent stake in BTS’ label Big Hit Entertainment dubbed to be the biggest IPO of the year when it goes public later.

By Kim Gyu-sik and Choi Mira

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