Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Acleda’s Channy hails ‘People’s IPO’




Acleda’s Channy hails ‘People’s IPO’

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Dr In Channy, president and group managing director of Acleda Bank.

Acleda’s Channy hails ‘People’s IPO’

Banker Dr In Channy is bursting with joy despite the gloom rocking the financial markets outside the Kingdom. Channy is laughing all the way to his Acleda Bank, which he founded 27 years ago as a young man.

Last Tuesday, the bank’s shares were oversubscribed 3.2 times during a book building exercise ahead of the institution’s initial public offering (IPO), which surprised even market observers, considering the current unpredictable global financial market conditions.

In an interview with The Post last Wednesday, from his impressive office on the 19th floor of the bank’s headquarters, Channy talked passionately about the bank’s future and the pending IPO, which has ignited new interest among industry followers.

“The result was more than triple our projections, thanks to potential investors. Even during these difficult times with the [Covid-19] crisis, they came in [to invest].

“Acleda Bank is a trusted bank, even at the beginning when we started as a microfinance institution, we published our audit statements every year, which were gone through by international auditors.

“And when we became a specialised bank in 2000, we disclosed information to the public – we published audit reports and annual reports.

“We have built the bank on three pillars – transparency, zero tolerance for corruption and always listening to our customers,” said Channy, president and group managing director of Acleda.

The 60-year-old banker’s bold move to list his institution on the Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX) – the first commercial bank to do so – despite the ongoing uncertainties in the financial markets, may jump-start the investment-starved domestic stock market, say observers.

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
In Channy (second from left) during a roadshow to promote Acleda’s upcoming IPO.

Nearly 2,000 Cambodian investors participated in the book building exercise, in which four million shares were floated in the market – clearly signalling strong investor interest in the bank.

“I did not expect this big a number. We planned for only two per cent shares, equal to 8,751,391 shares. Acleda Bank’s stock market [listing] is not directly influenced by the capital market or the global financial market. Acleda Bank focuses on the local market.

“[Generally] when there is a global problem, Cambodia is safe economically. I am confident investors will invest in the Kingdom because when they look at Cambodia they don’t look at it as one country but [a part of] Asean, with 600 million people. Many were concerned about [the partial withdrawal of] EBA but it did not have much impact, and the short-term impact now is the coronavirus, which is impacting everyone, not only Cambodia.

“But Cambodia can expect to gain more from the FTA [free trade agreement] with China, this is key. This will encourage foreign direct investment to increase.

Channy has turned Acleda, a non-government-linked microfinance institution, into a top-tier Cambodian bank with the largest market share for both loans and savings and deposits, nearly 50 per cent respectively. As of February this year, the bank had 405,620 active borrowers and 2.4 million customers with savings and deposits accounts.

The successful entrepreneur is unruffled by the negative noise in the financial markets and confident the planned IPO will be an unprecedented success story, with the bank raising the funds needed to upgrade its digital platforms as planned.

“Our IPO is a Cambodian people’s IPO. I hope when Acleda participates in the capital market, it will become active like the financial market. We have 2.5 million customers, which makes for 50 per cent of the total customers in the banking industry.

“As part of our strategy, we will raise the capital to improve our digital infrastructure, which will include a data centre covering Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar. We are setting foot in other countries in Asean without physical expansion,” he noted.

According to the bank’s website, as of last September, Acleda was the largest domestic bank in terms of gross loans – amounting to $3.61 billion, with total equity of $898.56 million – and the second largest in terms of total assets, $6 billion, and total deposits, $4.24 billion.

On the back of such impressive figures, a successful IPO may yet be the pinnacle of Channy’s illustrious banking career.

MOST VIEWED

  • PM: West unfair to Cambodia

    Prime Minister Hun Sen released a message celebrating the International Day of Peace on Monday, saying that some major powers and western countries had been systemically cooperating to put political pressure on Cambodia as they did in the 1970s and 1980s. Hun Sen said pressuring

  • ‘Bad news is an investor’s best friend’ – unlocking investment potential in Cambodia

    It is time to shop. Economic woes provide good pickings for investors if they know where to look The poem If, written by English Nobel laureate poet and novelist Rudyard Kipling for his son circa 1895, is widely perceived as fatherly advice for John who would

  • First ‘mobile kitchen’ in Cambodia enters service

    A catering company recently rolled out Cambodia’s first “mobile kitchen” – a $50,000 container capable of serving up to 200 people at a time. The kitchen is the brainchild of Seng Hok Heng Catering Services. At 4.4m-high, 6.8m-long and 2.4m-wide (expandable to 6.8m), the kitchen is equipped

  • Kingdom, China rebut basis for US sanctions

    The Council for the Development of Cambodia, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, and Tianjin Union Investment Development Group Co Ltd (Tianjin) have responded to US sanctions on Union Development Group Co Ltd (UDG), a Chinese-owned company currently developing the sprawling $3.8 billion Dara

  • PM requests Russia’s Covid vaccine

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has requested that Russia provide Cambodia with its Covid-19 vaccine after the former announced it planned on mass vaccinating its population next month. The request came on Thursday through the prime minister’s Facebook page as he met with Anatoly Borovik,

  • Influenza breaks out in eight provinces

    Nearly 600 people have been infected with influenza in eight provinces in the past month, Ministry of Health spokesperson Or Vandine said. The ministry is advising extreme caution. A report released by Vandine on Saturday said the Ministry of Health observed transmissions of influenza between August 15