Credit: Website of Asiana Airlines.
The Hanjin Group 한진그룹, which owns Korean Air 대한항공, may be acquiring Asiana Airlines 아시아나항공, South Korea’s second-largest air carrier. Asiana has been in trouble since 2019, when its parent Kumho Group 금호그룹 was forced to sell the crown jewel of the chaebol in order to make up for losses stemming from major acquisitions gone awry, such as its acquisition of Daewoo Construction 대우건설.
At the time, Kumho’s sale of its controlling stake in Asiana to Hyundai Development Company 현대산업개발 in December 2019 for KRW 322.8b (USD 300m) was considered fairly priced. Disaster struck for Kumho, however, when the COVID-19 pandemic decimated the airline industry. The HDC walked from the deal in September 2020, pushing Asiana Airlines into insolvency. If Hanjin Group scoops up Asiana, the combined airline will likely generate KRW 15t (USD 13b) in revenue, making it around the 12th largest airline in the world by revenue.