It was revealed that Kang Bang-cheon, chairman of Asset Plus Asset Management, who suddenly announced his retirement, was investigated by the Financial Supervisory Service over allegations of borrowed-name investment. This is because the loan of Chairman Kang’s personal funds to a corporation in which Chairman Kang is a major shareholder is a borrowed-name investment. Chairman Kang countered that he did not earn any profit other than statutory interest and that he was not a borrowed-name investment.
According to the financial investment industry on the 29th, the Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) recently discovered a circumstance suspected of self-trading through borrowed names during a regular inspection of Asset Plus Asset Management. The Financial Supervisory Service believes that the loan of Chairman Kang’s personal funds to a shared office company, where Chairman Kang is the major shareholder and his daughter is the second largest shareholder, is a self-selling.
Chairman Kang said it cannot be seen as self-trading and is not subject to sanctions by the FSS. In a telephone conversation with the Korea Economic Daily, Chairman Kang said, “I lent my personal funds to a shared office corporation at an annual statutory interest rate of 4.6%. said.
He added, “I did not receive any profit other than the interest received as a creditor. It is known that Asset Plus Asset Management recently signed a contract with a law firm and is preparing for sanctions by the Financial Supervisory Service.
An official from the Financial Supervisory Service said, “Even if the profits belong to the corporation, it is the same as that it belongs to Chairman Kang himself because he is a company in which Chairman Kang is the major shareholder. applicable,” he said. The official explained, “The inspection is over and we are currently discussing the level of sanctions.”
It is speculated that the reason why Chairman Kang suddenly announced that he would step down from management on the same day was due to a prosecutor at the Financial Supervisory Service. In a special letter, Chairman Kang said, “I want to leave after fulfilling my responsibilities at Asset Plus for the past 23 years. I want to put the rest of my passion in that place.”
Chairman Kang is a master of value investing in Korea and a first-generation fund manager. He is known for stocks that earned 15.6 billion won with 100 million won during the International Monetary Fund (IMF) foreign exchange crisis. After joining Dongbang Securities (now SK Securities) in 1987, he worked for Ssangyong Securities and Dongbu Securities before establishing Asset Plus Investment Advisory, the predecessor of Asset Plus Asset Management, in 1999.
It is expected that the ramifications of Chairman Kang’s illegal investment, which is called the ‘first-generation value investment master in Korea’ along with John Lee, former CEO of Meritz Asset Management, will have a significant impact on the securities industry. In May, the Financial Supervisory Service received a report that Meritz Asset Management invested funds in a company in which the wife of CEO John Lee is a shareholder and may violate the Capital Market Act. Former CEO John Lee countered that “there was no illegality,” but resigned as the CEO after a controversy arose.
By Seo Hyeong-gyo, staff reporter [email protected]