SK Group on high alert after chairman’s divorce ruling

SK Group Chairman Chey Tae-won attends a meeting with United Arab Emirates President Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan at Lotte Hotel Seoul, May 28. Joint Press Corps-Yonhap

SK Group is heightening vigilance over the latest divorce settlement ruling on its Chairman Chey Tae-won by holding an emergency meeting to discuss countermeasures against the court order, according to company officials, Monday.

This response follows the recent court ruling mandating Chey to pay 1.38 trillion won ($1 billion) in property division to his estranged ex-wife, Roh So-young.

Top management from the group’s major affiliates attended the meeting, reflecting concerns that the ruling could potentially undermine the 카지노사이트 conglomerate’s governance structure. The group fears that if the Supreme Court upholds the ruling, Chey’s management control over the group’s holding company, SK Inc., might be jeopardized. The fear is that he may be compelled to sell his shares in the company to meet the substantial property division settlement.

“The fact that the group held the emergency meeting with its CEOs shows that SK is taking a serious look at the issue, even if it has to do with Chey’s personal life,” an official at a major conglomerate said. “Minimizing any potential leadership risk is the top priority for most family-controlled conglomerates here, so the group’s top managment looks to have gathered to come up with its next action plans.”

Chey apologized for causing concerns to his employees, saying that he will continue fulfilling his role for the benefit of the group and the national economy.

“I would like to express regret for worrying SK members and all interested parties,” he said. “I will fulfill my duties, so I do not cause any negative influences, for not just the group, but the local economy.”

Last week, an appellate court ruled in favor of Roh, who is the daughter of late former President Roh Tae-woo.

The ruling came as a shock to SK Group, as it overturned a decision by a lower court by ordering Chey to divide all of his property. The Seoul High Court judged that SK Group was able to achieve robust growth for the past few decades due to preferential treatment it received during the Roh Tae-woo administration in the early 1990s.

The head of SK Group, however, underscored his strong willingness to “get the facts straight” over the latest ruling.

“I still think that I have to respect the judgment by the judiciary authority, but I cannot help express regret over the ruling that denied SK Group’s history of growth,” Chey said. “I will reveal the truth for the honor of SK Group and all its members.”

Chey and a group of 20 CEO-level executives from its affiliates joined the meeting to come up with group-wide strategies to deal with the latest court ruling.

In a bid to retain his leadership position, Chey is anticipated to explore options such as leveraging stock collateral loans against his shares in SK Inc. to fulfill the property division obligation. Additionally, he may consider divesting shares from other SK affiliates to raise the necessary funds.

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