SKT receives approval to buy Hynix

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SKT receives approval to buy Hynix

Korea’s antitrust watchdog said yesterday it has approved SK Telecom’s bid to take over Hynix Semiconductor, the world’s second-largest memory chipmaker.

The regulatory approval is expected to accelerate what will be the biggest acquisition by Korea’s leading mobile operator and end years of efforts by creditors of Hynix to unload their stake in the chipmaker.

“We concluded that SK Telecom’s Hynix acquisition does not limit market competition,” the Fair Trade Commission said in a statement.

The watchdog reviewed whether the integration of the telecommunications and telecom equipment-making businesses of SK Telecom with Hynix’s semiconductor manufacturing would stifle competition.

Even though the two companies are both major players in mobile and chip sectors, their technologies, supply channels and clients are different, the commission said.

SK Telecom controls 54.5 percent of Korea’s wireless market, and Hynix supplies around 20 percent of the global dynamic random-access memory (DRAM) market.

Last month, SK Telecom agreed to buy a 21.05 percent stake in Hynix for 3.43 trillion won ($3 billion) from creditors led by Korea Exchange Bank.

The deal is expected to be closed by mid-January.


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