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Asia-Pacific financial institutions M&A interest tracker

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Asia-Pacific financial institutions M&A interest tracker

This tracker covers possible deals reported by media across the Asia-Pacific region over a certain period. The information is gathered from various news sources, excludes confirmed deals and is limited to potential acquisitions or sales involving companies or operations in the region. Click here to read the previous month's article.

The Asia-Pacific insurance sector drew active interest from prospective buyers in November with potential deals ranging from investors selling stakes in Indian insurance joint ventures to a Hong Kong insurer being put up for sale.

Chinese financial firm JD Group is looking for a buyer for Hong Kong insurance business FTLife Insurance Co. Ltd., in a sale that could fetch between US$2 billion and US$2.5 billion, Reuters reported. Potential bidders could include Hong Kong conglomerate Chow Tai Fook, Asian private equity firm PAG and a Japanese insurer that is eyeing the Hong Kong insurance market. Another potential bidder for FTLife Insurance is Canada-based Sun Life Financial Inc., Bloomberg News reported.

In India, Oriental Bank of Commerce is putting up for sale its 23% stake in Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Life Insurance Co. Ltd. The bank is seeking expressions of interest from potential buyers by Dec. 3. The bank is said to be seeking to raise around 15 billion rupees from the sale, Mint reported. The sale process will likely be completed in the quarter ending March 31, 2019.

Meanwhile, HDFC ERGO General Insurance Co. Ltd. is in advanced talks to buy Apollo Munich Health Insurance Co. Ltd. for an approximate valuation of 26 billion rupees, The Economic Times reported. Munich Re Co. will reportedly exit from its joint venture with Apollo Hospitals Enterprise Ltd. after the sale. Apollo Hospitals will still own a small stake in the merged entity.

Below is a snapshot of November reports of possible deals compiled by S&P Global Market Intelligence.

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India's insurance space was not the only one that drew in interested buyers. Private equity firms, including Bain Capital LP and Baring Pvt. Equity Asia, have submitted bids for a 51% stake in Aadhar Housing Finance, The Economic Times reported. Aadhar Housing Finance could be valued in the range of 15 billion rupees to 20 billion rupees.

IDFC Ltd. has drawn interest from at least five parties for its wholly owned brokerage unit, IDFC Securities Ltd., Business Standard reported. Among the interested buyers are Axis Capital Ltd. CEO Dharmesh Mehta and Vikas Khemani, formerly institutional equities and investment banking head at Edelweiss Securities Ltd.

Dutch banking group ING Groep NV is looking to sell its remaining stake in Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd., BloombergQuint reported. The Dutch group has approached institutional investors to gauge interest in the shares. ING holds a 3.73% stake in Kotak Mahindra Bank, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence data.

Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services Ltd. is seeking buyers for its stakes in IL&FS Securities Services Ltd. and ISSL Settlement & Transaction Services Ltd., according to a Nov. 12 release.

Meanwhile, South Korean financial institutions continued to expand their presence in Vietnam as two potential deals surfaced in the Southeast Asian nation. Hana Financial Group Inc. unit KEB Hana Bank is in talks with Vietnam's central bank to acquire a 17.65% stake in JSCB for Investment and Development of Vietnam, or BIDV, The Nikkei reported.

Vietnam's central bank holds a 95.28% stake in BIDV. The stake sale could raise 30 billion South Korean won.

South Korean insurer Hyundai Marine & Fire Insurance Co. Ltd. plans to buy a 25% interest in VietinBank Insurance Joint Stock Corp., a unit of Vietnam Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Industry & Trade. The company will not disclose details about the deal until it formally signs an agreement with the bank. Hyundai Marine & Fire expects to complete the deal in the first half of 2019.

Further articles about other deal possibilities

Westpac open to divest financial planning business

China Cinda Asset Management to sell 25% stake in trust unit

Report: Lotte Group to sell credit card, insurance units

CDIB Capital to sell stake in Taiwan Stock Exchange

Report: BlackRock mulls mutual funds license in China

Report: India eyes merging 2 power-sector lenders

Report: Australia's Macquarie eyes acquisition of UK-based Liberum

Report: Japan's MUFG is lead bidder for DZ Bank's aviation financing business