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Lotte's IT unit holds IR sessions ahead of listing

All Headlines 10:43 July 03, 2018

By Kim Kwang-tae

SEOUL, July 3 (Yonhap) -- The Lotte Data Communication Co. is holding investor relations sessions in Singapore and Hong Kong ahead of its listing on the South Korean stock market later this month, a corporate insider said Tuesday.

The three-day IR sessions began Monday for foreign institutional investors, said Kim Chun-sik, a senior manager of Lotte Corp., without elaborating.

The information technology solutions unit of Lotte Group has set a price band on its shares of 28,300 won (US$25) to 33,800 won per share, Kim said. He said Lotte Data Communication is scheduled to debut on the Korea Exchange on either July 26 or 27.

The listing of Lotte Data Communication -- which is wholly owned by Lotte Corp. -- could help stabilize the conglomerate's corporate governance structure under its holding company.

Founded in 1996, Lotte Data Communication logged 32.7 billion won in operating profit and 691.3 billion won in sales last year. It employs nearly 2,000 people and has overseas branches in Vietnam, Indonesia and China.

In March, Lotte Data Communication CEO Ma Yong-deuk vowed to carry out new projects and expand the company's presence in the global market through the listing.

The corporate logo of Lotte Data Communication (Yonhap)

The planned listing marks the first initial public offering of a Lotte unit since October last year when the family-controlled conglomerate launched its holding firm, Lotte Corp., to help Chairman Shin Dong-bin solidify his leadership and streamline the group's managerial system.

In February, Shin was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison for giving bribes to a friend of ousted ex-President Park Geun-hye in return for business favors.

Last month, Shin kept his seat in the boardroom of Lotte Holdings Co., the holding firm for Lotte's Japanese affiliates, in a vote that cemented his grip on the retail giant from behind bars.

The failed attempt to dismiss Shin was brought up by his estranged elder brother Shin Dong-joo, former vice chairman of Lotte Holdings, who has waged an unsuccessful battle against Dong-bin to gain control of South Korea's fifth-largest conglomerate.

Lotte Holdings Co. is a crucial affiliate in the group's governance structure as Lotte Holdings and Lotte's other Japanese affiliates have a 99 percent stake in Hotel Lotte Co., the major shareholder of Lotte's South Korean units.

entropy@yna.co.kr
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