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SK Group adds 80 billion won to shared growth fund

SK Group announced Wednesday that it will increase the fund established to support small and medium-sized enterprises by 80 billion won ($74 million) to 230 billion won.

The additional funds were raised by SK Telecom, SK Global Chemical Co. and a financial institution.

The SK Group subsidiaries put together 32 billion won, the conglomerate said.

The fund was established in 2009 with 120 billion won, with SK Group and the Industrial Bank of Korea each raising 60 billion won.

The fund was then raised to 150 billion won.

Concerning the expansion of the fund, SK Group chairman Chey Tae-won was quoted as saying that becoming a supportive companion for SMEs was a management principle of the group, Chey said that establishing a “continuous and efficient platform for shared growth” was the main objective of the fund.

The fund is used to provide small and medium-sized SK Group suppliers with loans of up to 3 billion won. The interest rate is lowered by up to 2.4 percentage points from the rates an SME is offered from financial institutions, the company said.

The company said that applying the maximum reduction in interest rates, an SME with a 3 billion won loan stands to save 72 million won in interest payments per year.

According to SK Group, around 300 SMEs have taken out loans from the fund, the combined value of which stood at 131.6 billion won at the end of April. 

By Choi He-suk  (cheesuk@heraldcorp.com)
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