Woori Financial Group Inc. (KOSE:A316140) announced that it is actively considering the acquisition of local online brokerage firm Korea Foss Securities Co., Ltd., in a move to add a missing puzzle piece -- a securities arm -- as a leading banking giant "We are reviewing all potential companies (for acquisition) to make inroads into the (securities) industry, with the brokerage mentioned among them," the group's Chief Financial Operator Lee Sung-wook said on February 6, 2024 during the company's conference call Speculation about the potential acquisition emerged last week when Korea Foss Securities, an online-only brokerage company, was put up for sale. While industry sources suggest that discussions about the deal may have taken place during Woori's board meeting on February 6, 2024, the company declined to confirm the matter. This move represents Woori's latest endeavor to acquire a securities firm, as it is the only one among the country's top five financial holding firms without a brokerage arm.

In 2014, when current Woori Chairman Yim Jong-ryong had been the Chief Executive Officer of NH Financial Group, NH acquired the former Woori Investment & Securities -- now NH Investment & Securities If the acquisition proceeds, Woori is likely to merge Korea Foss Securities with Woori Investment Bank (Woori Investment Bank Co.,Ltd.), leveraging its existing infrastructure to enter the securities business without acquiring a new license.