SINGAPORE Oct 6 Myanmar banking group KBZ is
seeking to list its insurance arm on the domestic bourse as
early as next year, a senior executive said on Thursday, as the
formerly isolated nation slowly liberalizes its financial
The insurance arm, which has a paid-up capital of $55
million, could be listed as early as end-2017 on the Yangon
Stock Exchange, Nyo Myint, senior managing director of KBZ Group
Co, told Reuters.
KBZ has interests in banking, insurance, aviation and
The size of the IPO has not been finalized yet, but the
listed arm could have a market capitalization of around $500
million-$750 million, Myint separately told IFR, a Thomson
KBZ plans to list 40 percent of the insurance firm, he said.
Trading started on the Yangon Stock Exchange in March and so
far three companies have been listed.
KBZ's banking arm, meanwhile, is seeking a partnership with
a financial technology company to boost digital and mobile
banking solutions across the country, group executives said.
Coming from a low base after decades of economic
mismanagement by the military, Myanmar boasts one of the world's
fastest growing economies, expanding at 7-8 percent in the years
since the military relinquished direct control in 2011.
But, with a population of over 51 million, Myanmar is
regarded as one of the world's most "under-banked" countries in
the world where 77 percent of the population do not have access
to the banking system, according to a study by consultant Roland
Dexter Tan, executive consultant of Myanmar's biggest
private sector bank, KBZ Bank, told Reuters that the bank is
seeking a partnership with a financial technology firm to grow
its customer base through mobile and digital banking.
KBZ Bank wants to grow its customer base from 1.4 million to
more than 5 million in five years, largely through introduction
of digital solutions such as transaction banking and bill
"We are meeting a lot of fintech companies in Singapore and
other parts of the world to push ourselves to this area," he
(Reporting by Saeed Azhar, Marius Zaharia and Anuradha
Subramanyan; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman)