Home / Shipping News / Shipbuilding News / Hanwha heir vows to facilitate shipbuilding unit’s global expansion

Hanwha heir vows to facilitate shipbuilding unit’s global expansion

Hanwha Group Vice Chairman Kim Dong-kwan, the oldest son of Chairman Kim Seung-youn, told reporters on Wednesday that he will focus on making large-scale investments and establishing medium- and long-term strategies for Hanwha Ocean to gain recognition in the global market, as the group’s other defense subsidiaries do.

The heir apparent of the nation’s seventh-largest conglomerate made the remarks during his unusual media appearance at the biennial International Maritime Defense Industry Exhibition (MADEX) 2023 in Busan, where Hanwha’s three defense units opened their exhibition pavilions.

He came to Hanwha Ocean’s booth after inspecting its shipyard on Geoje Island in South Gyeongsang Province the same day, for the first time since the group acquired the shipbuilder, which was previously Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME).

“Although there remain many problems to solve, I have been sure of making good results after meeting many people at the shipyard,” he said. “Unlike other companies, defense companies should not just focus on maximizing profits, so we will focus on making Korea play a bigger role in the global defense industry under the recent international situation.”

In response to questions about additional M&A plans and restructuring of Hanwha Ocean, the vice chairman answered that the group does not have any specific plan for M&A deals at this moment, as it is concentrating on normalizing the shipbuilder.

“We do not intend to carry out restructuring,” he said. “Many of the shipbuilder’s workers were forced to leave the company in the past, so it is time for us to ask them to return to their previous workplace and to hire additional employees to go forward.”

During the exhibition, Hanwha Ocean, which is better known for its submarine technologies, focused more on promoting its ability to build surface vessels, so as to win government orders for the construction of the fifth and sixth Ulsan-class Batch III frigates.

It displayed four types of surface vessels ― an Ulsan-class Batch III frigate, a KDDX-class destroyer, a smart destroyer and an arsenal ship ― in addition to two types of submarines for export and an unmanned underwater vehicle.

Mentioning the fact that HD Hyundai Heavy Industries employees were found guilty of stealing DSME’s data on the KDDX-class destroyer’s design in 2014, Hanwha Ocean expressed confidence about winning the upcoming bid.

In addition, Hanwha Ocean and Babcock International signed a technical cooperation agreement at the exhibition venue, for the development of Canada’s defense industry.

Babcock also discussed mutual cooperation with HD Hyundai, which opened its exhibition pavilion right next to Hanwha Ocean’s. However, HD Hyundai President Chung Ki-sun and HD Korea Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering Vice Chairman Ka Sam-hyun did not attend the MADEX, as they flew to Norway to participate in the Nor-Shipping 2023 exhibition held in Oslo from Tuesday to Friday.
Source: The Korea Times

Recent Videos

Hellenic Shipping News Worldwide Online Daily Newspaper on Hellenic and International Shipping