Malaysian state retirement fund KWAP emerged as the highest bidder for a 30% stake in Prudential’s Malaysian unit.
However, the bidding price was short of the UK-based insurer’s expectations. According to reports, KWAP bid between RM3.7 billion and RM4 billion (US$937 million and US$1.01 billion), the highest of three bidders.
Prudential, however, asked KWAP, the country’s second-largest pension fund, to improve its bid.
Sources said the negotiations depend on pricing as well as on KWAP’s interest for a board seat and dividends, among other interests.
It was still unclear if KWAP’s negotiations with Prudential will end up in a deal or if the two other bidders, Employees Provident Fund and Khazanah Nasional, which are also state-owned entities, are still involved.
Prudential is selling its 30% stake in a local unit to comply with Bank Negara Malaysia’s directive last year for foreign-owned insurers to reduce their stakes to at least 70% by the end of June 2018.
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