South Korean digital bank Kakao Bank Corp has applied for preliminary approval for an initial public offering (IPO), Korea Exchange said on Thursday.

As one of two digital banks in South Korea, Kakao became profitable in 2019 after less than two years in operation. It reported a 113.6 billion won ($102 million) net profit in 2020, an eightfold increase from 13.7 billion won the previous year, according to a bank filing.

Kakao Bank issued shares worth 250 billion won ($223.9 million) to private equity firm TPG Capital ManagementĀ TPG.ULĀ in October and 250 billion won of shares to Anchor Equity Partners in November, valuing the company at about 9 trillion won. Analysts estimate the bank’s valuation at about 10 trillion won or more.

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Source: Nasdaq

By Joyce Lee