Hana Group vows to guarantee jobs at Lone Star

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Hana Group vows to guarantee jobs at Lone Star

The chief of Hana Financial Group said yesterday there will be no forced layoffs at Korea Exchange Bank once the group completes the purchase of the country’s No. 5 lender.

The group has agreed with Lone Star Funds to cut the sale price of KEB by 11 percent to 3.92 trillion won ($3.5 billion), paving the way for the U.S. buyout fund to exit the Korean market.

“We plan to operate two bank systems under the group’s wing later on,” Kim Seung-yu, chairman of Hana Financial Group, told reporters. “There is little need to carry out restructuring.”

The group said in a statement that it will guarantee KEB employees’ job security, adding that there is no overlap between Hana and KEB in their key businesses.

His remarks followed a breakthrough in negotiations that opened the door for Lone Star to leave the country after wrapping up its eight-year investment.

The fund has drawn a strong public backlash as many accuse it of attempting to flee the country after lining its pockets.

Kim said the group plans to submit an application for the KEB takeover to the financial watchdog today for regulatory approval. The Financial Services Commission requested a new application be submitted citing the change in circumstances.

“We hope the FSC will give the deal a green light within this year,” Kim said.

The proposed deal between the group and Lone Star will be effective until the end of February.

“Even if [KEB board members] decide to pay a dividend to Lone Star, I don’t think there will be a huge payout,” Kim said.


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