The Korea Herald


KH Group to acquire Alpensia Resort for W710bn

By Song Su-hyun

Published : June 25, 2021 - 14:58

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Alpensia Resort (KH Group) Alpensia Resort (KH Group)

KH Gangwon Development, a special purpose company of KH Group, will acquire the Alpensia Resort in PyeongChang, which was used as a venue for the 2018 Winter Olympics, the company announced Friday.

The company signed an agreement with Gangwong Province on Thursday to purchase the resort, some 180 kilometers east of Seoul, for 710 billion won ($629.65 million).

The deal is expected to be finalized by Aug. 23, after due diligence.

The Alpensia Resort served as the main location of the first Winter Games held in Korea in 2018.

Its facilities include a ski resort, a golf club, a water park and a hotel. They were used as outdoor sports venues, media centers and International Olympic Committee offices during the PyeongChang Games.

KH Gangwon Development said the company has made thorough preparations to acquire the resort over the last one year.

“The Alpensia Resort is located in a cleaner region than any others and it is 700 meters above sea level, which is excellent for one’s circadian rhythm,” said Han Woo-geun, CEO of KH Gangwon Development. “The company will enhance the resort business to make it the country’s No.1 resort.”

KH Group, the owner of electronics parts maker KH Freelux, is a known as a financially sound business group with about 2 trillion won ($1.7 billion) in assets. The group bought Grand Hyatt Seoul in 2019.

In addition to the resort’s current two golf courses, the company will build another golf course, outdoor swimming pool and ice rink.

The KH subsidiary will develop some 383,000 square meters of idle land and purchase an additional 1.3 million square meters in order to build an outlet shopping mall, theme park and village.

The resort broke ground in 2004 and opened in 2009 after injecting more than 1.6 trillion won. However, poor sales of its condominiums and operating expenses resulted in more than 1 trillion won in debt for Gangwondo Development Corp., the province‘s property developer that runs the resort.

Gangwon Province paid back a total of 623.2 billon won with taxpayer money, but the remaining 772.8 billion won debt has been burdening the province’s financial health.

The province tried to sell the resort numerous times after the Ministry of Interior and Safety in 2011 ordered it to improve its financial soundness.