RETAIL BANKING | Cesar Tordesillas, Vietnam

Sacombank launches Vietnam’s first wholly owned overseas bank

Sacombank became the country’s first banking institution to launch a wholly owned incorporation in a foreign country with its Cambodia unit.


With total chartered capital of US$38 million, Sacombank Cambodia has got a 99-year license from Cambodia’s central bank to operate as a commercial bank, the chairman of HCMC-based Sacombank, Dang Van Thanh, told reporters last Friday.

Sacombank has been present in the Cambodian banking market for more than two years through its Phnom Penh branch that is now allowed to incorporate as a full bank.

The Cambodia unit will target Vietnamese-invested companies, Vietnamese nationals and young Cambodian customers as key clients, Thanh said, adding the current branch was serving around 1,800 individual and corporate customers.

Nguyen Minh Tam, deputy general director of the Sacombank Cambodia branch, said the branch had raised a combined US$40 million, lent out US$58 million and gained US$2 million in pre-tax profit.

However, the bank has found it hard to prepare a well-trained workforce for its Cambodia incorporation. “We’re still bringing our staff in Vietnam to Cambodia while training Cambodian staff,” said Thanh.

Next year Sacombank Cambodia, he noted, will open an estimated four branches and transaction offices and increase its chartered capital by 22%, Thanh said.

In addition to the US$38 million investment in its Cambodia unit, Sacombank will expand its operations in neighboring Laos by injecting an extra US$12 million in its Laos branch.

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