At least three to bid for AIG Taiwan unit -sources

* Fubon, Chinatrust, Ruentex’s Yin will bid

* Cathay to make a decision on Friday

* Ruentex chairman taps bank loan via Citigroup

* Funding not issue for Fubon, Cathay

By Faith Hung

TAIPEI, Dec 2 (BestGrowthStock) – Taiwan’s Fubon Financial (2881.TW: ),
Chinatrust (2891.TW: ) and the chairman of conglomerate Ruentex
will bid for AIG’s (AIG.N: ) Taiwan unit after completing due
diligence, four sources with direct knowledge of the situation
said on Thursday.

A fourth party to the due diligence, Cathay Financial
(2882.TW: ), will make a decision on whether to bid on Friday, one
of the sources said.

All four had been invited by American International Group
(AIG) to do due diligence on the Nan Shan unit, which the
bailed-out insurer is trying to sell for a second time as it
looks to repay the U.S. government.

The sources, who asked for anonymity due to the sensitivity
of the matter, declined to say how much each would bid or give an
estimate of the possible price.

“Everybody wants to buy Nan Shan,” said one of the sources.
“Yes, Nan Shan has suffered losses, but it is its unrealised
investment gains that matter.”

The first three parties will submit their bids on Friday, the
sources said.

Nan Shan is Taiwan’s No.3 insurer by market share after the
insurance arms of Cathay and Fubon and has assets of T$1.7
trillion ($56.5 billion). Cathay has about T$2 trillion in
assets. Nan Shan lost T$12.7 billion in the second quarter and
T$12.5 billion in the third.

AIG said in November it aims to sell Nan Shan for around $2
billion within two months. [ID:nTOE6AA0CO]

Taiwan regulators rejected in August AIG’s plan to sell the
unit for $2.15 billion to a Hong Kong-based buyer group of China
Strategic (0235.HK: ) and Primus Financial, citing concerns about
their future ability to raise funds and lacking of experience in
running an insurance business.

Chinatrust, which has long publicly stated its desire to buy
Nan Shan, is raising about T$60 billion via a rights issue as
part of its bid. [ID:nTOE6AP06C]

Ruentex Chairman Samuel Yin, who is well known for Ruentex’s
successful retail chain store operations in mainland China, is
bidding as an individual and has asked Citigroup (C.N: ) to arrange
a syndicated loan for him, one of the sources added.

“Citi has approached several banks about their interest in
participating in a loan,” said the source.

Cathay and Fubon have ample cash to fund any bids.
($1=T$30.4)
(Editing by Jonathan Standing)

At least three to bid for AIG Taiwan unit -sources