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Report: Kyobo Life calls stake sell-off rumors 'totally unrealistic'

Kyobo Life Insurance Co. Ltd. said the rumors that Chairman Shin Chang-jae is considering off-loading stakes held by him and financial investors to a Korean banking group are "totally unrealistic," The Investor reported.

Kyobo Life is reportedly abandoning its planned IPO valued at up to 7 trillion Korean won as its representatives negotiate with KB Financial Group Inc. and Hana Financial Group Inc. over a potential sale of the stakes owned by the chairman and some foreign shareholders such as Affinity Equity Partners and Corsair Capital LLC. But the life insurer denied the sell-off rumors, saying that negotiations between a company official and banking groups could possibly be a breach of trust, according to the life insurer.

Financial investors' put-option on Kyobo Life shares are reportedly under negotiations. Investors were unable to exit Kyobo Life as the life insurer experienced a number of delays in its IPO. Foreign shareholders reportedly thought about letting the Korean Commercial Arbitration Board weigh in on the matter.

The Investor reported that Credit Suisse Korea, Citigroup Global Market Securities Korea, JP Morgan's Seoul office, Mirae Asset Daewoo and NH Investment & Securities are the underwriters of Kyobo Life's IPO.

As of March 7, US$1 was equivalent to 1,133.43 South Korean won.