The Internet-only KakaoBank has become the biggest financial company in the country on the day it was listed on the benchmark KOSPI, overtaking other traditional financial firms. Although its shares failed to record “ddasang,” a market slang referring to a new stock opening at double the initial offering price and hitting the daily limit on its first day, it closed at a new high, up 30 percent from the opening price, driven by institutional purchases.
Shares of KakaoBank, which made its market debut on Friday, closed at 69,800 won, up 29.98 percent from the opening price. The opening price was set at 53,700 won, up or 37.69 percent from the initial offering price of 39,000 won. KakaoBank shares fell at the start of trading due to profit-taking but the price later jumped 30 percent driven by institutional purchases.
After its successful debut, KakaoBank has become the largest financial firm by market value in the country. KakaoBank, with the market cap of 33.162 trillion won, overtook traditional financial firms, such as KB Financial Group (21.7052 trillion won) and Shinhan Financial Group (20.0182 trillion won). It even outpaced large conglomerates such as POSCO, Samsung C&T, and Hyundai Mobis, to become 11th largest company by market cap in the country.
KakaoBank’s price on book-value ratio (PBR) has been viewed excessively high by market watchers. But the concerns have been quelled thanks to purchases by foreigners. Experts say foreign investors saw potential for KakaoBank as a technology-based platform.