FPT Digital Retail set to launch IPO

FPT Digital Retail is set to launch an IPO on the Ho Chi Minh City Stock Exchange on Friday week, says the Vietnam News.

Details of the IPO pricing have not been disclosed, but the retail arm of Vietnam’s largest IT company plans to use the proceeds over the next three years to open 100 stores officially licensed by Apple, Deal Street Asia reports.

FPT secured the nation’s first licence from Apple in 2012 to set up a store network specialising in such products as the iPhone and Macbook under the brand F.Studio. There are now 10 outlets run by FPT Digital Retail. Apple products make up 40 per cent of the the chain’s offerings, and the retailer plans to increase the network tenfold.

Meanwhile, a survey has shown that more than a third of Apple products in the Vietnam market are “unauthorized” and do not have a guarantee from the manufacturer.

While Apple has a representative office in Vietnam, there is yet to be an official Apple Store. Sales of Apple products in the Vietnam are currently valued at $1 billion annually. Apple iPhones accounted for 7 per cent of the total 14 million smartphones sold in Vietnam last year, ranking third after Samsung Electronics (28 per cent) and Oppo (25 per cent), according to IDC Vietnam.

Vietnam has 15 Apple-authorized stores run by local retailers, including the 10 F.Studio outlets and those of Mobile World Group. This compares with 527 authorised stores in Singapore, 480 in Thailand and 364 in Indonesia.

FPT Retail general director Nguyen Bach Diep has told an investor roadshow in Ho Chi Minh City that the market listing date will be no later than April 30.

CEO Nguyen Viet Anh says the company expects total revenues of about US$600 million this year, 10 per cent of this from online sales, while its profit is estimated to be VND293 billion (about US$13 million) by year-end.

Splitting from FPT’s retail and distribution sector in 2012, FPT Retail is now the second-largest information and communications technology retailer in Vietnam, holding 18 per cent market share after Mobile World Group with 45 per cent.

FPT Retail’s nationwide store network will reach 480 outlets by the end of this year, up 25 per cent year on year. 

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