As the court rejected the injunction filed by KCGI (Kang Sung-bu Fund) to ban the issuance of new shares of Hanjin Kal, Korean Air’s acquisition and merger of Asiana Airlines (M&A) is expected to pick up speed.
However, there are many remaining tasks for the two brands to complete the integration into one. First of all, labor unions, which are highly concerned about the restructuring of redundant workers, should be persuaded, and combined screening should be passed by rival authorities at home and abroad. The three-way alliance cannot be ruled out if it continues to lead the issue through appeals.
Korean Air CEO Woo Ki-hong held an online press conference on Tuesday afternoon to answer questions about the acquisition.
Woo said, “We plan to draw up a plan to merge the two companies by March 17 next year, and we will form a committee of experts in each field to conduct due diligence on Asiana Airlines.” In the meantime, he explained the synergy effect of integrating the two companies directly.
In particular, he reiterated that there will be no artificial restructuring following the merger. It is interpreted that the two companies’ labor unions are trying to persuade them that they should reveal specific action plans to prevent restructuring.
Woo also announced plans to submit a report on the merger to rival authorities in each country by Jan. 14 next year. Regarding some monopoly concerns, he said, “Except for some long-distance routes, the monopoly issue will not be big. Of course, there are Jin Air, Air Busan and Air Seoul, but I don’t think this part is included in the market share because it operates as a separate company that competes with Korean Air and Asiana Airlines.”