The secret to great Vietnamese cooking is adding fish sauce to just about every dish. KKR, one of the world’s largest US-based private equity firms, seems to have applied this to the context of investing when it decided to add a Vietnamese fish sauce company in its portfolio.
The $159 million deal, announced on April 13th, was the largest private equity transaction in Vietnam. KKR successfully acquired 10% stake in Masan Consumer Corp., which is the market leader for fish, soy and chili sauces in Vietnam. The high-stake deal highlights a young and well-managed Vietnamese private company that aims to become a “local multinational corporation”.
Masan Group, the parent company of Masan Consumer Corp., was registered as recent as 2004. In the past few years it has come out with innovative necessity products that cater to the changing tastes and the growing health consciousness of the emerging middle class consumers. The management boasts a diverse group of international experienced investment bankers, financial analysts and consumer industry experts.
With the investment from KKR, Masan Food expects many strategic transformations in the next two years. Much awaits to be seen what would become of this already successful consumer product company and if it is true that fish sauce can make everything better.