Thai Life surrounds itself with major investors for a $1 billion IPO

HONG KONG, June 28 (Reuters) – Thai Life Insurance’s IPO, aiming to raise up to $1.04 billion, will be sold to 18 domestic and international investors.

Those investors will account for about 50% of the IPO, Southeast Asia’s largest to date, in 2022, according to a term sheet seen by Reuters. The bookbuilding process will open on Thursday.

Thai Life did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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GIC Pvt Ltd is the largest among international grassroots investors – those who commit in advance to invest a fixed amount of money, or for a fixed number of shares, in an IPO – and has subscribed for about $164 million in shares followed by Oaktree Capital and Ghisallo Master Fund, according to the term sheet.

Domestically, the asset management arms of Siam Commercial Bank (SCB.BK), Kasikorn (KBANK.BK) and Krungsri (BAY.BK) are the main local investors to subscribe for shares.

Thai Life aims to raise $972 million for its first share sale and $1.04 billion if an over-allotment option is exercised, the company said in a filing on Monday.

Retail investors in Thailand will have access to $318 million worth of shares, according to the term sheet.

Following the deal, Thai Life will have an implied market capitalization of approximately $5.2 billion.

Proceeds from the IPO would provide working capital, support digital transformation and strengthen distribution channels with partners, the company said.

The IPO would be the biggest equity market deal in Southeast Asia in 2022, according to data from Refinitiv, with just $2.38 billion in IPOs in the region to date , compared to $6.1 billion at the same stage last year.

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Reporting by Scott Murdoch in Hong Kong; additional reporting Chayut Setboonsarng in Bangkok; Editing by Kim Coghill and Rashmi Aich

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