Big Brazilian firms setting sights on S. Korean bourse

February 28, 2012 11:30 am 

SEOUL, Feb. 28 — Several big-cap Brazilian petrochemical makers, resource developers and food companies are seeking to list their shares on the South Korean bourse in a bid to tap a new funding source, market watchers said on Tuesday.

Brazilian companies setting sights on the South Korean stock market include Braskem, the largest petrochemical company in the Americas, and Brasilfoods, the world's third-largest meat processor.

The Brazilian companies have been sounding out the possibility of share listings on the Korea Exchange (KRX) via the Brazilian unit of Mirae Asset Securities Co., they said.

The market capitalization of Brasilfoods amounts to around 20 trillion won (US$ 17.7 billion), with that of Braskem reaching 8.3 trillion won.

"Brazilian companies are searching for ways to secure funds in Asia as European economies are in a fix," said Cho Ung-ki, the president of Mirae Asset Securities. "Currently, Brazil needs funds to power growth. Brazilian companies are showing interest in South Korea as well as Japan."

The bourse operator KRX said it plans to discuss the matter with its Brazilian counterpart.

"We plan to visit the Brazilian stock exchange and discuss the listing of Brazilian companies on the South Korean bourse," a senior KRX official said. "But nothing specific has been determined yet."

KRX Chairman Kim Bong-soo is scheduled to visit the Brazilian stock exchange late next month and discuss ways to boost bilateral cooperation.

It is the first time that Brazilian companies are seeking listings on the South Korean bourse, though several Chinese and Japanese firms have been listed here. <P>Currently, there are 19 overseas firms listed on the local exchange, including 16 companies from China. The KRX has been ramping up efforts to lure more foreign companies and forge partnerships with overseas bourse operators in an effort to cope with ongoing consolidation among the world's major exchanges.(PNA/Yonhap)

FPV/jnc

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