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KDIC sells 2.75% stake in Hanwha Life

The state-run Korea Depository Insurance Corp. said Thursday it sold a 2.75 percent stake in Hanwha Life Insurance Co. as part of efforts to recoup taxpayer money injected into the insurer.

The stake, or 23.9 million shares, was offloaded to domestic and foreign institutional investors through a block sale in after-hours trading for 173.9 billion won ($153 million), or 7,280 won per share.

The state deposit insurer said the stake sale has raised the recovery ratio of public funds pumped into the insurance company to 65.4 percent from 60.5 percent.

The corporate logo of Hanwha Life Insurance Co. (Yonhap)
The corporate logo of Hanwha Life Insurance Co. (Yonhap)

The KDIC said it will soon come up with a disposal plan for its remaining 12.5 percent interest in the country's second-largest life insurer by assets after consultation with the Public Fund Oversight Committee, which oversees the retrieval of public funds.

In 1999, the government injected 3.55 trillion won in public funds into Hanwha Life Insurance, then the Korea Life Insurance, in the wake of the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis that put Corporate Korea on the brink of bankruptcy.

In 2002, Hanwha Group, a leading South Korean family-owned conglomerate, acquired a 51 percent stake in Korea Life Insurance from the government. The insurance company was renamed Hanwha Life Insurance. (Yonhap)