Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton and Clifford Chance have advised on a $1.7 billion private placement of shares in Seoul-based banking services company KB Financial Group, Inc.

The 35 million shares in the placement represent the nine-percent stake in KB Financial held by its Kookmin Bank subsidiary as the result of a 2008 restructuring. Kookmin was required to sell its interest in KB Financial by September 2011 in order to comply with Korean regulations on financial holding companies.

Kookmin was advised by Cleary Gottlieb, with a team led by Hong Kong-based partner Yong Guk Lee. In 2006, the firm advised Kookmin on its $6.7 billion acquisition of a 65 percent stake in Korea Exchange Bank. Two years later, it also acted as counsel to Kookmin when it acquired 23 percent of Kazakhstan-based commercial bank JSC Bank CenterCredit for $500 million.

The underwriters–Citigroup, Inc. and Bank of America Merrill Lynch–were advised by Clifford Chance Hong Kong partner Hyun Kim.

Email: jseah@alm.com