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Lotte brothers open new round of blame game

SDJ Corporation chairman Shin Dong-joo on Thursday rebutted Lotte Group chairman Shin Dong-bin’s claim that he had inflicted billions of won in damages to Lotte while he served as the vice chairman of Lotte Holdings in Japan.

The eldest son of Lotte founder Shin Kyuk-ho and his younger brother Shin Dong-bin have been locking horns over the helm of the 90 trillion-won ($79 billion) Lotte Group for over three months, and their battle has recently evolved into a blame game.

While Shin Dong-joo and Shin Kyuk-ho accuse Shin Dong-bin for having lost 1-2 trillion won in Chinese ventures, Shin Dong-bin earlier on the day revealed that Shin Dong-joo inflicted 1 billion yen ($8.4 million) worth of losses in failed information technology system development, which Shin Kyuk-ho did not approve of.

However, Shin Dong-joo said that the project was actually a success.

“The problematic project was to develop a ‘point of sale’ management program which administered the display of confectionary goods on store shelves,” Shin Dong-joo’s spokesman stated. “It was a success and was even sold to Coca-Cola Japan last year,” he said.

“Shin Dong-joo fell short of $300,000 amid the project and offered to put his own money into the development, but was rejected. This shows that Shin Dong-joo was very much committed to the project and has been transparent in the use,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Youth Community Union, a group fighting for the rights of youths -- especially unemployed or irregular workers -- on Thursday named Shin Dong-bin the worst employer of the year.

“Shin Dong-bin’s Lotte has abused its power and made youths work for petty amounts of money,” the group said.

By Bae Ji-sook (baejisook@heraldcorpcom)

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