Hyundai Chairman Hangs Onto Post
As we reported earlier, Hyundai Chairman and convicted embezzler Chung Mong-koo faced a challenge to his leadership at the annual shareholders meeting. Amazingly, Chung was able to retain his position despite having been convicted of "appropriating" $100m of company money and creating a bribery slush fund. Reuters reports that Chung survived opposition from Korea's National Pension Fund, the company's sixth-largest stakeholder as well as from other minority shareholders. Chung's popularity is said to be based on Hyundai's need for "strong and experienced leadership to cope with tough market conditions." Our guess is that shareholders want to hold onto Chung's battle-proven bribery rolodex in order to keep the Korean currency weak, as the cheap Won is Hyundai's major competitive advantage in light of rising commodity costs and increased competition. Stock value one, rule of law nil.
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