Vingroup could raise as much as $2 bln in Vietnam's biggest share sale -sources

* Vingroup sale could fetch double than expected -sources

* Sells stake in two units to GIC

* Identifies one unit as Vinhomes, does not name other (Adds details from term sheet in paras 4-5)

By Anshuman Daga and Khanh Vu

SINGAPORE/HANOI, April 17 (Reuters) - Vingroup JSC is looking to raise as much as $2 billion from the listing of its residential property business in what could be Vietnam's biggest initial equity offering, sources familiar with the matter said on Tuesday.

The fund raising by Vinhomes would be double to what sources had estimated last month and comes as foreign and local investors pour money into the country, attracted by a strong economic growth and a slew of sales by state-owned and private companies.

A couple of units of Vingroup are keen to sell down and raise funds through the equity offering, said two sources, who did not want to be named as the details are private.

Vingroup, Vietnam's biggest property developer, expects to kick off roadshows for the offering from April 27 and price it on May 7, with trading set for May 17, according to a copy of the term sheet seen by Reuters.

The offering will consist entirely of sales by existing investors, the termsheet showed.

Vingroup declined to comment on the share sale but said in a statement earlier in the day that Vinhomes filed an application this month to list its shares on the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange.

In the same statement, Vingroup said it had raised $1.3 billion by selling a stake in two of its units to Singapore's GIC and through a loan, also from the sovereign wealth fund.

It identified one of the units as Vinhomes.

The money raised will be used to fund the units' projects, Vingroup said, adding that Credit Suisse had arranged the deal.

Equity issues are booming in the Southeast Asian nation as it speeds up a privatisation drive. Strong interest from foreign investors and local funds has pushed up the benchmark index by 17 percent so far this year, making it one of Asia's best performers after rising nearly 50 percent last year.

Reuters reported last week that Vietnam Technological and Commercial Joint Stock Bank launched an IPO that aims to raise as much as $922 million and has attracted global funds, including GIC, as cornerstone investors.

Vingroup is a diversified company, operating in real estate, education, healthcare, entertainment, retailing, agriculture and automobile manufacturing sectors.

Last year, Warburg Pincus-backed Vincom Retail JSC, Vietnam's biggest shopping mall operator and a unit of Vingroup, raised roughly $700 million through an equity offering. ($1 = 22,770 dong) (Reporting by Khanh Vu and Anshuman Daga; Editing by Himani Sarkar and Muralikumar Anantharaman)

First Published: 2018-04-17 05:01:10
Updated 2018-04-17 12:56:38

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