The Korea Herald


Netmarble offloads KakaoBank shares worth W113b ahead of casino game buy

By Park Ga-young

Published : Aug. 26, 2021 - 14:05

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Netmarble logo (Netmarble) Netmarble logo (Netmarble)
Netmarble sold 133 billion won ($114 million) worth of shares in KakaoBank to secure liquidity, a regulatory filing showed on Thursday, ahead of the payment deadline for its acquisition of a social casino game company.

This is the second time the mobile game company unloaded its holding in KakaoBank after it sold 6 million shares for 430 billion won on Aug. 10, just days after the internet-only bank successfully made its market debut on Aug. 6.

After the two rounds of offloading, it still holds 7.61 million shares, valued at about 625 billion won based on Wednesday’s closing price of 82,100 won.

Netmarble joined the consortium of the internet-only bank at the very early stage in 2016 and invested a total of 91.7 billion won in the company.

Industry sources are saying that Netmarble will use the proceedings to complete the acquisition of SpinX, a Hong Kong-based social casino game company, valued at 2.5 trillion won. The company had said that it would utilize 1.78 trillion won from its cash holding and loans to buy SpinX, a deal announced earlier this month. Netmarble plans to pay 80 percent of the 2.5 trillion won by Sept. 17 and the remaining 20 percent over four years.

In addition to KakaoBank, the company also sold all of its holdings in Kakao Games, some 3.21 million shares, in a block deal on Aug. 12, securing 253.6 billion won.

Shares in Netmarble declined 6.25 percent as of 2 p.m. on Thursday.