The Korea Herald


SK Inc. pledges more shareholder benefits

By Lee Ji-yoon

Published : March 29, 2022 - 15:38

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SK Inc. CEO Chang Dong-hyun speaks at a general meeting of shareholders in Seoul on Tuesday. (SK Inc.) SK Inc. CEO Chang Dong-hyun speaks at a general meeting of shareholders in Seoul on Tuesday. (SK Inc.)
SK Inc., the strategic investment arm of SK Group, on Tuesday pledged to enhance shareholder benefits while consolidating its investment portfolio centering on advanced materials, biopharmaceuticals and carbon neutrality.

The holding firm of the nation’s third-largest conglomerate held a general meeting of shareholders at its Seoul headquarters earlier in the day, during which all agenda items, including financial statements for the fiscal year of 2021 and the reelection of SK Group Chairman Chey Tae-won as an internal director, were approved.

For 2021, the firm reported 98.33 trillion won ($80.63 billion) in sales and 4.94 trillion won in operating profits.

“SK Inc. will realign its asset portfolio and investment strategies in 2022, while bolstering its investment expertise and upgrading its management system including shareholders’ return policy” said SK Inc. CEO Jang Dong-hyun in his opening remarks.

“Despite challenging market conditions, SK Inc. continues to elevate itself as a frontier, which sets itself apart by aggressively delivering a profit to shareholders and making assets more efficient.”

Adding to its current policy of contributing more than 30 percent of its dividends income for shareholder benefits, the firm said it plans to use its investment gains to repurchase its own shares, worth more than 1 percent of its market cap, every year through 2025.

“Share buyback and cancellation are also among possible options from a shareholder return perspective,” Chief Financial Officer Lee Sung-hyung added.

Senior executives at key business divisions also briefed on the firm’s business plans this year.

The materials investment division that mainly invests in materials for chips, batteries and EVs plans to further expand its presence in the fast-growing EV battery market.

Construction is underway for a new anode materials plant along with its joint venture partner Group 14 Technologies, the US battery storage tech firm. A new joint venture has also been set up with Beijing Easpring, the China-based lithium-ion battery cathode materials developer.

When it comes to the biopharmaceutical sector, its contract manufacturing subsidiary SK pharmteco posted a 19 percent growth in revenue last year following its acquisition of Yposkesi, a French cell and gene therapy manufacturer.

In order to further strengthen its competitiveness in the cell and gene therapy market, the firm said it is betting on the production of small molecule active pharmaceutical ingredients this year.

The green investment division will continue to pursue asset investments at home and abroad, with an emphasis on four carbon-free areas: new energy, sustainable food, environmental technologies and carbon management.