ING to sell its share of KB Financial

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ING to sell its share of KB Financial

Dutch insurance giant ING Group plans to sell all of its stake in Korea’s No. 2 industry player KB Financial Group, the insurer said Friday, apparently due to failed negotiations for a takeover deal involving its insurance unit here.

ING Group said it will likely earn about 500 million euro ($667.9 million) from the sale of its 5.02 percent stake in KB Financial

The move comes after the board of KB Financial turned down a company plan to take over ING Life Korea on Dec. 18, dealing a blow to the group’s push for business expansion.

The global insurance giant ING Group decided to sell its Korean subsidiary earlier in a bid to tide over its financial problems.

KB Financial attempted to win board approval after it was selected as the preferred bidder for ING Life Korea in September, but failed to receive the nod due to strong opposition from some outside directors.

ING Group purchased a 9.99 percent stake in Housing & Commercial Bank in 1999, which was later acquired by Kookmin Bank, the flagship unit of KB Financial in 2001.

ING Group is the second-largest shareholder of KB Financial after the National Pension Service with a 7.22 percent stake.

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