South Korea’s Samsung SDI Co. has unloaded all of its 4.04 million shares in affiliate Samsung C&T Corp. to comply with tougher cross-shareholding regulations following the merger between Samsung C&T and Cheil Industries in 2015.
The battery making unit under Samsung Group disclosed that it sold all of its remaining shares in Samsung C&T worth 559.9 billion won ($524.5 million) in a block sale to unidentified institutional investors before market opened on Wednesday. The stake sale aims to simplify cross-affiliate stakeholding and raise funds for investment, it said.
Led by Citigroup Global Markets Korea Securities and Credit Suisse, the shares were offered at 138,500 won apiece, discounted 3.82 percent from the Tuesday closing price.
Shares of Samsung C&T closed Wednesday down 3.12 percent at 139,500 won. Samsung SDI shares finished up 0.54 percent at 187,000 won.
Samsung SDI shed the shares ahead of the Aug. 26 deadline set by the Fair Trade Commission (FTC) in February, following the release of Samsung Group heir Jay Y. Lee after his year-long imprisonment.
The antitrust watchdog had initially viewed the 2015 merger of Samsung C&T and Cheil Industries as a “strengthening” of the cross-shareholding structure and had ordered Samsung SDI to discard 5 million shares out of its total 9.04 million shares in Samsung C&T. But it gave a different interpretation in December and identified the merger as creating a “new” connection. Samsung SDI was required to discard remaining shares as the fair trade law prohibits the creation of new inter-affiliate shareholding within conglomerates.
By Lee Dong-in and Kim Hyo-jin
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