SK Ecoplant may have to overhaul its ownership structure Company will have to offload some waste management affiliates

Translated by Kim So-in 공개 2021-06-25 08:14:27

이 기사는 2021년 06월 25일 08:09 더벨 유료페이지에 표출된 기사입니다.

SK Ecoplant, which is ramping up expansion in the environmental business, may have to overhaul the ownership structure amid its mergers and acquisitions (M&A) push.

SK Ecoplant has cut its stake in Jinan Bio Energy. Environment Management Corporation, a subsidiary of SK Ecoplant, reduced its stake in the company from 65% to 13.4%. Although it is a small change for its small affiliate with less than 1 billion won in capital, the change represents SK Ecoplant’s issue with its ownership structure.

SK Ecoplant bought waste management firm EMC Holdings from Affirma Capital for about 1 trillion won in 2020. EMC Holdings has various waste management companies under its wing. SK Ecoplant also vowed to invest 3 trillion won by 2023 to expand the eco-friendly business and take over innovative companies.

SK Holdings, the holding company of SK Group, is at the peak of the ownership structure, with SK Ecoplant being its subsidiary.

The current fair trade law requires a holding company to own a 20% stake in listed subsidiaries and a 40% stake in non-listed subsidiaries. The holding company’s second-tier subsidiaries are required to own 100% of their subsidiaries. This could limit SK Ecoplant's efforts to expand the environmental business through acquisitions.

Earlier this year, SK Ecoplant merged EMC Holdings with two environment management companies, including Environment Management Corporation, reducing the number of tiers of its ownership structure from three to two.

However, there is still an issue to address. The Eco Platform, a de facto holding company of SK Ecoplant, is the parent company of Environment Management Corporation, which owns landfill management and other regional business sites.

From the perspective of the SK Group’s holding company, The Eco Platform is its second-tier subsidiary and Environment Management Corporation is the third-tier subsidiary. It has to offload other affiliates as it is not allowed to own them under the law. Considering the timing of incorporation of EMC Holdings, the company will likely have a grace period of about one and a half years to solve the issue.

SK Ecoplant said, "We keep this situation in mind and will solve the issue before the deadline."

SK Ecoplant recently announced new bolt-on acquisitions where the company will purchase 100% of Daewon Green Energy, Saehan Environment, Clenco and DDS. (Reporting Youn-Jae Lee)
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