Hyundai Motor plans for shareholder body after land deal irks investors

Monday, Apr 27, 2015

Hyundai Motor on Monday said it will establish a committee to represent shareholder interests when the board makes key decisions such as acquisitions, heeding calls from investors angered over a $10 billion land purchase last year.

Hyundai Motor and two of its affiliates in September bid three times the appraised price for a property in Seoul's expensive Gangnam district to house a group headquarters, rekindling investor worries about opaque decision-making at South Korea's family-run conglomerates.

The decision sent shares of Hyundai Motor plunging and compelled the automaker to announce share buybacks and dividend hikes.

Speaking at an annual shareholders' meeting last month, Chief Executive Kim Choong-ho said the company was considering proposals from investors to protect minority shareholders and enhance shareholder value.

Hyundai Motor's "transparency management committee" will consist of four outside directors, one of whom, Seoul National University professor Yi You-jae, will be in charge of defending shareholder rights and communicating with investors.

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