MBK Partners, the largest private equity firm in Korea, became a new owner of ING Life Korea after much controversy.
The Financial Services Commission (FSC) announced at its December 11 meeting that it approved Life Investment Ltd., a special purpose company established by the Korean private equity fund MBK Partners for the transaction, as the largest shareholder of ING’s wholly-owned life insurance business in Korea.
As a result, the takeover of ING Life Korea by MBK Partners, which was selected as a preferred bidder for ING Life Korea’s sales, is gaining momentum.
An official at FSC said, “We reached the conclusion that there is no problem with Life Investment’s eligibility as the largest shareholder of ING Life Korea under the law.”
MBK Partners reportedly revealed its plan to financial authorities that it will refrain from demanding a higher price for the new issue, and that it will not resell ING’s life insurance business in Korea for at least 2 years.
In August, MBK Partners and ING Group signed a contract for the sale of ING’s 100% stake in its Korean unit for about 1.84 trillion won (US$1.75 billion).