(Updated on July 12, 2016 to clarify a previous business title of Chun-woong Park, a new steering committee member, as the head of the Korean arm of Eastspring Investments)
Korea Investment Corporation (KIC), managing $92 billion of public funds, has named a business professor and an asset management firm head as new private-sector members of its top decision-making body, in a step that may complete the reshuffle of key senior officials at the sovereign wealth fund.
Since Sung-soo Eun took office as the chief executive officer last January, senior officials of the KIC, including chief investment officer, chief risk management officer and chief operating officer, offered to resign en masse in the following month. Eun has replaced the CIO, CRO and COO since then.
A KIC source told the Korea Economic Daily on July 4 that Myeong Hyeon Cho, a Korea University professor of international business and Chun-woong Park, CEO of the Korean arm of Eastspring Investments, were named as new civil members of the KIC’s steering committee. Kyung-soo Chung, vice president of Dongbu Life Co. Ltd., was reappointed as another steering committee member from the private sector, after his term of office recently expired.
The steering committee of the KIC discusses and votes on its mid- and long-term investment policies and selection of external management firms. It consists of three official members – finance minister, Bank of Korea governor and KIC CEO – and six private-sector members from the investment management industry or academia. One of the six civil members chairs the committee: currently, DaeSik Kim, a Hanyang University professor. Two other existing members from the private sector include Wookyu Park, an advisor of Lee International IP and Law Group, and Yeongseop Lee, a professor of Seoul National University’s graduate school of international studies.
Shin-woo Kang, who was appointed last month as the CIO of the sovereign wealth fund, had served as a civil member of the steering committee. He had left the committee member job to apply for the CIO position. The office terms of the other two members – Korea Investment & Securities CEO Sang-ho Yoo and Dongbu Life’s Vice President Chung – expired at the end of June.
One of the incoming private-sector members, Myeong Hyeon Cho, studied business in Seoul National University and received a Ph.D from Cornell University. He has been serving as a business professor of Korea University since 1997, specializing in corporate M&As. He has worked as a non-executive director of a number of South Korean companies, including SK Broadband Co. Ltd. and Samsung Techwin Co. Ltd. (currently, Hanwha Techwin). Also, Cho was recently named as the president of Korea Corporate Governance Service, a non-profit group.
Chun-woong Park, an ex-research head of Morgan Stanley’s Seoul office, had worked for the former Merrill Lynch Investment Managers as an asset manager, and had a stint at Woori Investment & Securities and Mirae Asset. He graduated from Yonsei University’s department of economics and received a master’s degree in economics from the University of Notre Dame in the United States. Since 2012, Park has been heading the Korean unit of Eastspring Investments.
By Chang Jae Yoo
<Edited by Yeonhee Kim>