SEOUL, (Reuters) – An unidentified Saudi conglomerate plans to submit its bid to buy a controlling stake in Hyundai Engineering & Construction, a local newspaper reported on Friday.
“After reviewing several circumstances, it has decided to independently submit a letter of intent,” JoongAng Ilbo quoted an agent for the Saudi firm as saying.
The paper added the Saudi royal family holds the biggest stake in the conglomerate that runs construction, real estate and financial services.
An official at one of the creditors of Hyundai Engineering, said they had not received a bid from the Saudi company.
The creditors, which include the Korea Exchange Bank, had put up their 35 percent stake in the builder on sale. The shares are worth $2.56 billion.
Preliminary bids are due on Friday at 0600 GMT.
Hyundai Motor Group, the world’s fifth-largest automaker, has announced its bid for the country’s biggest builder, stirring up a contentious battle by rival members of the Hyundai family.
“We have so far received an LOI (letter of intent) from Hyundai Motor Group. We hope more contenders will participate,” the official at one of the creditors told Reuters on condition of anonymity.
Hyundai Group, the department store, shipping and tourism group is seeking to regain control of Hyundai E&C, which fell into the hands of creditors in 2001 because of financial woes.
The JoongAng Ilbo said Hyundai Group has asked Saudi Arabia’s companies to be its financial investor.