The IPO of Mobifone is on the list of awaited deals in 2019 (Photo bizlive.vn)

Hanoi (VNS/VNA) -
Vietnam has leapt to become Southeast Asia’s top grossing market for initial public offerings (IPO) in 2018 with total proceeds of 2.6 billion USD.

Singapore, who lost its crown to Vietnam, retreated to fourth position this year with total IPO value of just 500 million USD. Thailand ranked second with total proceeds of 2.5 billion USD and Indonesia was in the third place with 1.2 billion USD, data from global consultant firm Ernst and Young (EY) showed.

Vietnam’s rise was attributed to large IPO deals in the country as the Government pushed ahead with equitisation of big State-owned corporations.

The five biggest IPOs of State-owned enterprises have raised more than 19.2 trillion VND (821 million USD). They included PetroVietnam Power Corporation (PV Power), Binh Son Refining and Petrochemical Corp JSC (BSR), PetroVietnam Oil Corp (PV Oil), Vietnam Rubber Group (VRG) and Vietnam Southern Food Corp (Vinafood II).

The IPO of PV Power was the biggest deal with proceeds of almost 7 trillion VND, followed by BSR with 5.57 trillion VND and PV Oil with 4.2 trillion VND. VRG and Vinafood II each earned the Vietnamese Government over 1 trillion VND for their IPOs.

The biggest deal, however, belonged to a private company – the 1.35 billion USD IPO by Vinhomes, a real estate arm of Vingroup. This is also the largest ever in Vietnam and Southeast Asia’s second biggest deal in 2018.

Vietnam’s rise is among few performers which saw growth in IPO activities. About 1,359 IPOs were carried out globally, down 21 percent year-on-year, but total proceeds rose 6 percent to 204.8 billion USD thanks to mega deals such as the 21.1 billion USD IPO by Japanese SoftBank, 7.5 billion USD IPO by China Tower and 5.4 billion USD IPO by China’s mobile phone company Xiaomi.

In Southeast Asia, besides Vietnam, only Indonesia has had a busy IPO market with yearly growth of 66 percent while the rest of the region, including major financial hub Singapore, witnessed declines.

According to experts, global trade wars, political tensions and volatile markets in the second half of this year have had an adverse impact on businesses, causing some delays in their listing schedules.

In the next three years, with more State-owned enterprises being equitised, Vietnam is expected to remain at the top of Southeast Asia’s IPO league, according to a report from Baker McKenzie and Oxford Economics compiled by CNBC.

Big IPOs expected in 2019 will include Mobifone, Vietnam Posts and Telecommunications Group (VNPT), EVNGenco 1 and 2 and Agribank.-VNS/VNA