Hynix names Chey as co-CEO amid controversy

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Hynix names Chey as co-CEO amid controversy

Hynix Semiconductor appointed SK Group Chairman Chey Tae-won as its co-CEO yesterday during a meeting of its board of directors.

The move came as Chey is being prosecuted for embezzlement. Together with his younger brother Chey Jae-won, he stands accused of misappropriating almost 100 billion won ($88.9 million) from SK coffers. SK Telecom, the group’s telecom arm, purchased Hynix last year.

Meanwhile, SKT CEO Ha Sung-min has been named chairman of the board, while Hynix CEO Kwon Oh-chul retains his former position.

SKT owns 7.47 percent of Hynix but is deemed the largest shareholder, as the 9.15 percent held by the National Pension Service includes shares held by the government.

SKT completed payment of 3.37 trillion won for a total of 146.1 million shares yesterday, making it the largest shareholder in the chipmaker with a 21 percent stake.

Now, attention is being directed at how the company will be transformed under the stewardship of the country’s third-largest conglomerate.

“I will work hard for the company’s success,” Chey said during the meeting at the chipmaker’s headquarters in Daechi-dong, southern Seoul. “SK and Hynix will create a significant synergy, especially in their overseas businesses.”

The NPS’s committee on voting rights was divided over Chey’s nomination as the new Hynix chief on Monday, stoking further controversy.

By Song Su-hyun [ssh@joongang.co.kr]

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