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VIGroup invests in Kids Plaza

Released at: 14:01, 23/02/2018

VIGroup invests in Kids Plaza

Photo from enternews.vn

Investment fund now a minority shareholder in maternal and baby product retail chain.

by Hong Nhung

Vietnamese private equity firm the Vietnam Investment Group (VIGroup) has become a minority shareholder in Kids Plaza, a local retail chain for maternal and baby products. The value of the deal was not disclosed.

Founded in 2009 by CEO Do Van Tuan, Kids Plaza now has 72 outlets in four major cities and provinces - Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Hai Phong, and Bac Ninh province - along with an online retail channel and sells more than 10,000 products for mothers and children.

VIGroup is a private equity firm focusing on high-growth businesses in Vietnam. Founded in 2006, it provides early-stage and expansion capital to industry-leading companies and works with management to grow revenue and margins and improve operations, thus creating shareholder value.

It also works with companies in merger and acquisition (M&A) projects or sector reorganization. Its three investment funds are now managing $400 million in total.

According to its website, it often takes a majority stake where it has industry expertise (via operating partners or co-investors) and is able to add significant value. Its investment can take the form of pure equity, performance-linked equity, or convertible debt, and it targets an investment horizon of four to six years.

VIGroup is now investing in sectors such as transport and logistics, tourism and hotels, education, restaurant chains, real estate, and technology.

There are some 1.6 million babies born every year in Vietnam, according to researchers Intage Vietnam. The baby care market is valued at around $2.5 billion a year and is expected to grow to $5 billion in the near future.

The Daiwa-SSIAM Fund II, the second partnership between Japan’s Daiwa Securities and Vietnam’s SSI Asset Management, invested an undisclosed sum in the mother and baby retail chain Concung.com in February. The value was not disclosed but the fund manager has said it typically invests $4-6 million.

The retail chain’s competitive advantages, it said, are its professional founders and management team, its deep roots in information technology and systems management, and strong experience in retail operations and development.

Meanwhile, ACA Investments, the private equity arm of Japan’s Sumitomo Corporation, also paid an undisclosed sum last May to pick up 20 per cent of Vietnamese baby product retailer Bibomart.

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