GS Group chairman delivers pep talk to affiliates

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GS Group chairman delivers pep talk to affiliates

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Huh Chang-soo

GS Group Chairman Huh Chang-soo has urged affiliates not to lose investment momentum in the fast-changing market, emphasizing the role of corporations to lead growth and create jobs.

The nation’s eighth-largest conglomerate, which owns GS Caltex and GS Retail, yesterday held its third quarter executive meeting at its headquarters in Yeoksam-dong, southern Seoul.

Huh, who also is chairman of the Federation of Korean Industries, the country’s leading business lobby, stressed that the level of business investment must be maintained.
“The market is changing fast and we need to invest at the right time so as not to lose momentum,” Huh said. “Growth with profitability will make the company sustainable, and that will lead to creating quality jobs to help our society.”

Although the second-quarter performance of GS affiliates hasn’t been announced, industry insiders expect a disappointing report from GS Caltex, the nation’s second-largest refiner and flagship affiliate of GS, which accounts for more than 30 percent of group sales.

According to latest data from FnGuide, a financial information provider, GS Caltex sales in the second quarter are expected to drop 2.74 percent year-on-year to 10.08 trillion won ($9 billion), with an operating profit of 21.5 billion won, a 45 percent decline from the previous quarter.

However, data from FnGuide also suggested that distribution affiliates GS Retail and GS Home Shopping and energy companies GS EPS and GS Power will likely fill the void.

“Companies that performed poorly against competitors should first examine the reason and then put forward their best effort to enhance profitability,” Huh said. “Companies making profits should think about their business portfolio for the next three or five years and prepare for the future.”

The 64-year-old chairman also emphasized fostering talent, strengthening education for employees and learning from successes and failures.

“The source of corporate competitiveness is people,” Huh said. “The ‘owner spirit’ starts with taking responsibility.”


BY joo kyung-don [kjoo@joongang.co.kr]

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