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Hyundai Motor to launch i40cw at Geneva and A new Test Drive Strategy

Hyundai Motor is planning to launch at the Geneva Motor Show next year March the i40cw station wagon built for the European market and competing against such vehicles as the Opel Insignia Sports, the Ford Mondeo and the VW Passat.

The South Korean car maker released first sketches and details of the model, saying customers would now have 2 choices between petrol and a diesel unit. Fitted with start-stop technology, consumption is listed at around five liters per 100 kilometers.

Features include Bi-Xenon headlamps with curvature lighting and lane assist.

The sketch shows a flat windscreen with a roof sloping slightly to the rear. The upper window line forms a coupe-shaped silhouette while the front grille is in the typical Hyundai design.

On the other hand, with the result of the recent survey on how customers would be convinced in buying a car which “Test Drive” leads the survey that car fanatics would love to have a test drive first before deciding to buy the car.  Hyundai Motor Co. will soon introduce a test driving service that allows potential customers to test drive vehicles delivered to a place designated by the motorist from Jan. 3, 2010 around South Korea.

The service, which the company is operating on pilot basis until the end of the year, allows customers to pick any Hyundai vehicle for a test drive and have the vehicle delivered at a place and time set by the customer.

The vehicle can also be returned using a similar system with Hyundai employees picking up the car at a place and time chosen by the driver.

Until the end of the year, the service is available through 12 test driving centers in Seoul, Busan, Incheon, Daegu, Gwangju and Daejeon. From Jan. 3, the company plans to expand the service to 30 centers across the country.

To use the service, visit the carmaker’s website at  or visit one of the designated test driving centers.


Hyundai Engineering is in the move to be the top 15th Engineering Firm in the World

Hyundai Engineering & Construction has won a $534 million US Dollar project to build an advance technology medical center in Doha Qatar. This is another Million Dollar project of Hyundai Engineering & Construction in the last quarter of 2010.

Hyundai Engineering & Construction signed a contract with Qatar’s Public Works Authority to construct the Hamad Medical City at the 2006 Doha Asian Games site, beating industry leaders from the USA and Italy.

Over the next 34 months, Hyundai E&C will renovate the site, which was used as an athlete’s village and offices for the Asian Games, into an advanced technology hospital which specializes in gynecology, surgery and rehabilitation, as well as a medical research center. This project could boast the medical tourism from different part of the Middle East to experience the advance technology in Doha.

This is another good chance for Hyundai Engineering & Construction to be the priority list for the future project of Qatar. Qatar is an important market which is expected to place orders for diverse large-scale construction projects as the country would be hosting for the 2022 World Cup.

“Through winning bids for the Heart of Doha project (in April) and Hamad Medical City, we have gained momentum to re-enter the Middle East market.”

The Hyundai Engineering & Construction, meanwhile, will continue to step up efforts to diversify its overseas markets and the range of its projects next year, aiming to become a top 15 engineering firm in the world.


Hyundai Motor Group - the new Preferred Bidder for Hyundai E&C Group

SEOUL: South Korea's Hyundai Motor Group will likely be named as new preferred bidder for the country's largest builder, the Hyundai Engineering and Construction Group (Hyundai E&C Group) a major shareholder of the builder said Wednesday, after rival Hyundai Group was pushed out of the race when it fails to submit the requirement.

Nine creditors with a combined 34.88 percent stake in Hyundai Engineering and Construction Group will vote at an unspecified date on whether to name Hyundai Motor preferred bidder, Ryu Jae-Han, head of state-run Korea Finance Corp, told Dow Jones Newswires.

On Monday creditors walked away from an initial deal to sell their stake to the Hyundai Group, saying it did not give them enough information about how it would finance the reported 5.51 trillion won (4.9 billion US Dollar) cost.

When asked whether Hyundai Motor, which lost the preliminary deal in November, would be chosen as preferred bidder this time, Ryu said he "can't deny" the possibility.

"I can't deny that the current atmosphere makes it seem that way, but that's something that the creditors need to vote on. We'll have to see how the process plays out," Dow Jones quoted Ryu as saying.

If the deal goes through Hyundai Motor would become the construction company's biggest shareholder.

The takeover battle is part of a family feud over the former Hyundai Empire, which was split into separate units after the death of its billionaire founder Chung Ju-Yung in 2001.

Hyundai Motor, headed by the founder's second son Chung Mong-Koo, was hived off almost a decade ago as a separate entity. With affiliate Kia Motors, it is now the world's fifth largest carmaker.

The construction firm came under creditor control in a debt-for-equity swap in 2001 amid lingering fallout from the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis.

The Hyundai Group -- which includes a shipping firm, a brokerage, a tour company that operates projects in North Korea and an elevator maker -- initially outbid Hyundai Motor for the construction firm.

The group's chairwoman Hyun Jeong-Eun is the founder Chung's daughter-in-law.

But creditors said Hyundai Group failed to submit detailed information about its financing of the acquisition, particularly a 1.2 trillion won loan obtained from French bank Natixis.



Hyundai Expected sales in USA for 2010 will reached up to 539,000 cars

Korea’s leading automaker Hyundai Motor Co. has sold more than 500,000 vehicles this year in the USA.

It is the highest number of cars Hyundai has ever sold in a single year since tapping into the U.S. market in 1986, the company said, adding that it expects to sell 530,000 vehicles by end-year.

“Hyundai’s sales continue to climb as more consumers become aware of our excellent products, high quality, the industry’s best warranty, and improving dealership experience,” said Dave Zuchowski, executive vice president at Hyundai Motor America.

A slew of new models, such as the all-new Tucson and Sonata, were also attributed for the increased market share, he said.

Hyundai’s Sonata sedan was the company’s most popular model in 2010, selling 183,295 units, up 50 percent from a year earlier, according to Hyundai.

Sales of the Tucson, a sport utility vehicle, reached 36,333 units, up 135 percent on-year, it said.

Hyundai said it plans to expand its vehicle lineup by including more luxury sedans and eco-friendly cars in order to keep up its strong performance in the U.S. market.

It will also launch the Equus and Sonata Hybrid cars in the U.S. next year, the company said.

Meanwhile, Hyundai and its affiliate Kia Motors Corp. sales in China are expected to surpass a combined 1 million units this year.

Hyundai Motor said its January-November sales in China reached 637,686 units, a 23.5 percent increase from the same period last year.

Its smaller affiliate Kia Motors Corp.  sold 301,358 vehicles in the same period, up 44.6 percent from a year earlier.

The combined number of the automobiles sold by Hyundai and Kia in China during the 11-month period totaled 939,044 units.

The two companies are the only Korean auto manufacturers that produce and sell within China.

According to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers on Thursday, Korea held 7.54 percent of the Chinese auto market share during the January-November period, ranking fourth after China, Japan and the United States.

Hyundai and Kia have been aggressively pushing into China as the country has become the world’s largest automobile market.

The two companies sold more than 800,000 cars in China last year. They are seeking to sell more than 1.1 million vehicles there in 2011.

Auto sales in China exceeded 16 million units from January to November as demand in the world’s most populous market continues to grow, the association said.

The figure represents a 34.05 percent surge from the number of units sold during the same period last year.

The figure marks the second year that the number of vehicles sold in China has surpassed that of the United States, which logged

10.4 million in sales during the January-November period.

Last year, China surpassed the U.S. to become the world’s largest automobile market. Auto sales in the U.S. totaled 10.4 million in 2009.

In November of this year, 1.697 million units were sold, up 26.86 percent from a year earlier.

The association said it expects the total number of cars sold to reach 18 million by the end of December.

Sales for the next year will likely be around 20 million units, according to an estimate by the industry group.

During the last 11 months, local Chinese manufacturers held 45.43 percent of the market share, selling 5.65 million vehicles, followed by Japanese manufacturers with 2.43 million, or 19.51 percent, and German firms with 1.80 million units, or 4.51 percent.

The U.S. and France sold 1.28 million units (10.33 percent) and 333,400 units (2.68 percent), respectively.

China’s auto exports soared 68.53 percent to 483,300 units during the same period from a year earlier. (Yonhap News)


Hyundai's Tau engine ranked to the top 10

Hyundai Motors Tau engine was named one of the world top 10 engines of 2011, making the list for the third consecutive year.

In 2008, the company’s 4.6-liter Tau engine became the first Hyundai-developed engine to make the list complied by the auto publication Ward’s Auto.

The engine included in this year’s list is the newly developed 5-liter, gasoline direct injection Tau engine that puts out 429 brake horsepower.

The new engine will be fitted in the Equus and Genesis sedans sold in the U.S. market.



Whistleblowers' leaked 72.5% ownership of Hyundai E&C in return of loan fund by Hyundai Group'

Korea Exchange Bank main creditors raise questions on the terms of investment by Tong Yang Securities for whistleblowers’ leaked 72.5%  ownership of Hyundai E&C in return of loan fund by Hyundai Group.

Hyundai Group is struggling for further pressure to answer issues by bank creditors related to the 1 Billion Dollars financing sources of its bid for Hyundai Engineering & Construction Group.

Lately, Hyundai Group were asked to submit detailed information on whether it had agreed to a put option on Hyundai Engineering & Construction  shares when Tong Yang Securities agreed to provide 800 billion won ($705.6 million) as a strategic investor in the takeover deal.

A put option gives the owner the right to sell a specified amount of shares at an agreed price and deadline. Critics say the “put option” could amount to a disguised high-interest loan by Tong Yang to Hyundai Group with Hyundai Engineering & Construction Group shares possibly serving as collateral, which would be in violation of the takeover terms set by creditors.

Lat December 16, 2010, the creditors demanded that Hyundai Group must submit more documents concerning its 1.2 trillion won loan from a French investment bank with a deadline of December 14, 2010 to submit the documents or face the risk of having its preferred bidder status for Hyundai Engineering & Construction revoked.

International Business analyst said “The history repeats itself” as the Hynix was mismanaged by the Hyundai Group and finally lost it in 2002, the Hyundai Engineering & Construction Follows and lost its full control during Asian Economic down-turns. “The Stability of Hyundai Group is unpredictable” to take charge for the company which was founded by the Late Ju yung Chung with Chung family’s highest sentimental value is unsafe at the hand of Jeong eun Hyun.  The late Chung’s son with good management plan would take care of it or lost it from the control of the Chung’s family forever like what had happened to the Hynix

"There was a request among the creditors to confirm whether there was a put option between Tong Yang Securities and Hyundai Merchant Marine [Hyundai Group’s main unit],” said an official from Korea Exchange Bank, the main creditor. "Hyundai Group should submit information if there were any put options included in the consortium contract with Tong Yang Securities, and if not, whether there are any such plans for the future."

Ryu Jae-han, president of the Korea Finance Corporation, one of Hyundai Engineering & Construction’s three main creditors, has been the main executive raising questions about the possibility of a put option.

Ryu has been the only creditor to publicly say he may seek the assistance of financial authorities to clarify the issue.

Hyundai Group has already denied that it agreed to put options with Tong Yang Securities.

"We don't know why the parties including the other bidder [Hyundai Motor Group] and even some of the creditors are trying to create an atmosphere for canceling the memorandum of understanding [on the sale of Hyundai E&C], which is in violation of the agreement," said a Hyundai official.

"We hope that the creditors will stop being pushed around and change their position so we can move forward with the deal under the original guidelines,” said the official, referring to pressure being applied by Hyundai Motor.



Hyundai Group Leaks a deal from Austria for 72.5% Hyundai E&C Ownership for $1.1 Billion USD Loan

Hyundai Group at risk of losing bid for Hyundai Engineering & Construction if it fails to obey


Creditors from Hyundai Engineering & Construction yesterday demanded that Hyundai Group should submit more documents about its controversial 1.2 trillion won ($1.1 billion USD) loan from French investment bank Natixis that helped finance its takeover of Korea’s largest builder.

Creditors said that a loan confirmation document submitted earlier by Hyundai Group was not sufficient to clear up doubts about the loan conditions. Hyundai Group bid 5.5 trillion won to acquire a 35 percent stake in Hyundai E&C.

Hyundai Group last week submitted a loan confirmation issued and notarized by Natixis that stated that the group had not pledged shares in Hyundai E&C or its group affiliates as collateral to gain the loan, which would have been in violation of the takeover terms.

But new questions have been raised on whether the person who signed the loan confirmations was not from Natixis but rather its affiliate NexGen Capital and Nexgen Reinsurance.

“We feel that the confirmation that Hyundai Group submitted is insufficient,” the creditors said. They said that Hyundai Group will have to submit additional documents by Dec. 14 or risk losing its status as preferred bidder for Hyundai E&C.

Hyundai said that there are no problems with those who signed the loan confirmation since they hold concurrent positions at Natixis.

NexGen Capital had previously provided financial assistance to Hyundai Group and the Ireland-based company currently holds 5 percent of Hyundai Merchant Marine’s shares. It has been at the center of attention since some believe the loan was backed by NexGen.

“Asking for the loan contract when we have proven everything through the confirmation is unheard of in the history of M&As and is a very irrational demand,” said Hyundai Group officials. Information was published in the local media yesterday that M+W Group, an affiliate of Austria’s Stumpf Group, had demanded acquiring 72.5 percent of Hyundai Engineering in return for providing a 1 trillion won investment as a strategic partner with Hyundai Group for the Hyundai E&C takeover. M+W Group later withdrew its offer as a strategic investor after Hyundai Group rejected the demand.

“We don’t know how the information was leaked, but this is true. But we could not accept this offer and the deal collapsed in the end,” said a Hyundai Group official. “We have no plans whatsoever to sell Hyundai Engineering.”

Hyundai Group is also under pressure by its creditors to sign a financial restructuring program, with the deadline expiring yesterday. Hyundai Group said it is willing to do so, but is asking for more time until the Hyundai E&C deal is completed.

Korea Exchange Bank, the main creditor for both Hyundai Group and Hyundai E&C, recently asked Hyundai Group to sign the financial restructuring plan but Hyundai said the demand was made at the last minute.

Hyundai Group said the timing is inconvenient since it is in the last stages of trying to complete the takeover of Hyundai E&C. “We must concentrate on the deal until it is completed.”


By Jung Seung-hyun []


Lock & Lock, Hyundai, Woori Finance: South Korea Equity Preview


The following companies may have unusual price changes in South Korea After the North Korean Attacked to the South Korean Island. Stock symbols are in parentheses, and share prices are from the previous close.

The Kospi index rose 0.1 percent to 1,927.68.

Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. (042660 KS): The shipbuilder is likely to win a $4 billion order to build 20 container vessels for A.P. Moeller-Maersk A/S, Korea Economic Daily reported yesterday, citing industry officials it didn’t identify. Daewoo fell 1.7 percent to 28,200 won.

Hyundai Engineering & Construction Co. (000720 KS): Creditors of the builder asked Hyundai Group to provide more proof of how it will fund its planned acquisition of Hyundai Engineering, according to an e-mailed statement yesterday by Korea Finance Corp., the biggest shareholder of the South Korean builder. Hyundai Engineering climbed 4.3 percent to 63,300 won.

Lock & Lock Co. (115390 KS): The company was rated new “buy” by Samsung Securities Co., with a target price of 46,000 won. The maker of plastic food containers rose 3.2 percent to 38,450 won.

Maeil Diary Industry Co. (005990 KS): The milk maker will work with Sapporo Holdings Ltd. to sell Sapporo’s beer in South Korea, the Japanese brewer said yesterday in a statement. Maeil shares gained 2.4 percent to 19,600 won.

Woori Finance Holdings Co. (053000 KS): A group led by employees of Woori will submit a preliminary bid as the government privatizes the company, Maeil Business Newspaper reported yesterday, citing a Woori official it didn’t identify. Vogo Fund may separately bid for Woori, the report said. Woori rose 4.7 percent to 14,450 won.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jun Yang in Seoul at /Editor  :Darren Boey at


Hyundai Engineering & Construction's $4.8 billion sale at risk on funding plan


The $ 4.8 Billion sale of stake in Hyundai Engineering & Construction Co Ltd (000720.KS) may be at risk as top shareholders delay signing a deal while awaiting clarification on funding plans from Hyundai Group.

Shipping-focused underdog Hyundai Group was unexpectedly picked as preferred bidder for the 35 percent stake on November 16, beating out rival Hyundai Motor Group.

Hyundai Group offered about 5.5 trillion won ($4.8 billion) -- more than double the current market value of the country's top contractor -- but has failed to sign a preliminary agreement with creditors-turned-shareholders ahead of the November 29 deadline.

The major shareholders of Hyundai E&C requested additional information on Hyundai Group's financing plans, which involve a 1.2 trillion won loan from France's Natixis SA (CNAT.PA) amid market speculation that Hyundai Group might have offered group shares as collateral.

"We want additional information on the financing, including the lending agreement between Hyundai and Natixis," said a spokesman for Korea Exchange Bank (004940.KS) a major E&C shareholder.

Hyundai Group has said the French investment bank extended the loan without collateral and the deposit was legitimate, a source close to the matter said.

Hyundai Group said on Friday that demands for further verification at the preliminary deal stage violated bidding rules, and urged Hyundai E&C's top shareholders to sign the deal by the Monday deadline.

"We are waiting for Hyundai Group to submit the documents. We will decide (whether to sign a deal) after reviewing the documents," Korea Finance Corp President Ryu Jae-han told Reuters on Friday.

Hyundai Group has also demanded that shareholders withdraw their nomination of Hyundai Motor Group as reserve bidder, arguing that the auto-focused group had leaked confidential bidding information and spread false rumors.

The dispute is the latest twist in an acrimonious battle between the conglomerate and Hyundai Motor Group after the original Hyundai group was torn apart by family infighting.

Hyundai Motor Group, the world's fifth-largest automaker, lost out to Hyundai Group after a 5.1 trillion won offer. It has refrained from publicly responding to its rival's criticisms.

But the group had asked questions about sale process to creditors via advisor Goldman Sachs (GS.N) a source close to the matter told Reuters.


(by Reuters:  Hyunjoo Jin; Editing by Chris Lewis)


Hyundai Steel’s Dangjin plant brings green approach to steel

Hyundai Steel’s new blast furnace (right) at the company’s plant in Dangjin, South Chungcheong Province. (Hyundai Steel)

With the second blast furnace kicking in, the annual production capacity of Hyundai Steel’s integrated steelworks in Dangjin, South Chungcheong Province has doubled to 8 million tons.

While the Dangjin plant allowed Hyundai Steel to begin producing steel from the raw materials, which according to experts offers a higher profit margin than using electric arc furnaces, the facility has larger implications for Hyundai Motor Group as a whole.

By adding blast furnaces to its operations, Hyundai Motor Group was able to complete what it calls “resource circulating business structure” that goes from molten iron to automobiles, and from scrap back to unprocessed steel.

Under the resource circulating business structure, steel produced at the Dangjin plant will be processed by Hyundai Hysco into cold-rolled products, which will then be used in Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Motors Corp.’s vehicles.

The steel from scrapped vehicles will then be melted down at Hyundai Steel’s electric blast furnace and used to produce construction materials, which will be used by the group’s construction arm Amco.

However, Hyundai Steel’s move upstream in the steel industry comes at a time when environmental concerns are rising.

The steel industry has long been considered to be one of the more serious polluters, and the use of coal as a raw material in steelmaking with blast furnaces highly carbon intensive.

Hyundai Steel’s Dangjin plant, however, was built with such concerns in mind from the designing process.

In building the plant, the company installed the world’s first enclosed raw material processing system as part of its efforts to make it a “world-class eco-friendly steelworks.”

In Hyundai Steel’s system, all movement of materials from ship to processing facilities occur on enclosed conveyor belts. In addition, the materials are stored in dome-shaped stores cutting off all contact with open air, addressing the problem of dust from coal and other materials ― a major pollutant associated with steelworks ― at the source.

According to the company the enclosed domes also help save space in storing the materials.

Hyundai Steel estimates that the dome stores are about 2.5 times more efficient in terms of iron ore storage per unit area.

In addition, Dangjin plant’s enclosed storage facilities also allow the company to save fuel, which in turn helps reduce its carbon footprint.

According to Hyundai Steel, the facilities maintain the water content of the materials constant at between 6 to 8 percent. In contrast, materials stored outside can contain up to 14 percent water during the rainy season, and this water needs to be evaporated leading to additional energy costs.

However, the effect of eco-friendly technologies is not limited to the more obvious benefits of reducing pollution, but extends to the productivity of companies and nations.

According to a report by Oh Dong-hyun of the Samsung Economic Research Institute, Korea ranks third among members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, with an average annual growth rate of 4.84 percent.
However, the country ranks 22nd in terms of green productivity, which takes into account the effects “non-economic” by-products, such as greenhouse gases, have on the economy, among the 32 OECD member nations.

According to the SERI report, green management’s core consists of three Rs; reduce, replace and recycle.

In addition to the groundbreaking enclosed raw material storage system, Hyundai Steel’s Dangjin plant has a number of features for meeting various areas of the three Rs of green management.

According to the company, the Dangjin plant is capable of recycling almost 100 percent of the by-products of steel making.

The company said that nearly all of the coal tar and sulfur produced from processing the gas generated in producing coke is used to produce a range of chemicals including benzene and toluene, while the slag is used in blended cement and used to form roadbeds and as structural material in buildings.

In addition to recycling by-products, the company has a number of measures for processing waste water, and monitoring and reducing emissions of sulfur and nitrogen oxides.

According to the company, gases generated during steel making at the Dangjin plant under go a two-step process to bring sulfur and nitrogen oxides content to well below the legal limits.

Waste water generated at the plant is subjected to chemical and biological processing to maximize recycling, while the unused processed waste water is returned to the sea 300 meters away from the coastline to minimize pollution.

By Choi He-suk (

Hyundai Motor sales surge in Latin markets

Hyundai Motor Co., Korea’s largest automaker, said Tuesday its sales in South American nations have surged nearly 29 percent this year, already surpassing the figure for all of 2009.

In the first 10 months of this year, the company sold 186,206 vehicles in the region, up 28.7 percent from the same period last year. The company sold 180,355 units in the entire year of 2009.

Sales in Argentina nearly doubled as they rose 91.9 percent from a year earlier while shipments in the Dominican Republic jumped 78.1 percent on-year and those in Puerto Rico 76 percent, according to company officials.

Hyundai’s market shares in six different countries, including Ecuador, Chile and Panama, have also exceeded 10 percent.

“Recording an over 10 percent market share in so many countries of South America where the company does not have a production facility means it is doing extremely well,” a company official said.

In Panama, Hyundai sold 6,181 vehicles in the January-October period, trailing Toyota with 7,052 units for the spot of the top-selling foreign brand there this year.

“If Hyundai does become the top-selling brand in Panama this year, it would have a significant meaning as it will be the first time for Hyundai to become the top seller in any South American nation,” the company official said.

Currently, South America accounts for only 6.2 percent of Hyundai’s global sales, but the company is planning to build a plant in Brazil, as early as from next month, as it believes the region will soon become one of the largest markets in the world.

Meanwhile, Hyundai Motor Co. and affiliate Kia Motors Corp. have surpassed Toyota Motor Corp. as the largest Asian carmaker in Europe this year after the Japanese company’s sales tumbled on recalls, according to data released by the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association

The two firms boosted Europe sales 4 percent in the first 10 months to 521,369 vehicles, . Toyota sales, including its Lexus premium brand, plunged 17 percent to 511,754.

The Seoul-based group has withstood slumping European auto demand this year. The carmaker has also won market share in the U.S. from Toyota after the Toyota City- based company recalled more than 8 million vehicles worldwide for repairs related to unintended accelerations.

“Hyundai and Kia have clearly benefitted from Toyota’s massive recalls,” said Ahn Sang-joon, an auto analyst at Tong Yang Securities Inc. in Seoul. “They have also expanded their model lineups in European markets giving more choices to consumers.”

Overall auto sales in Europe have fallen 5 percent this year to 11.6 million, according to the automakers group. Nissan Motor Co. has posted the biggest increase among major brands, with sales climbing 13 percent.

The Korean automakers’ European sales may climb even more next year as they are preparing to introduce new models specifically designed for the region, said Kim Byung Kuk, a Seoul-based analyst at Daishin Securities Co.

Hyundai fell 4 percent to close at 180,500 won in Seoul trading today, while Kia dropped 2.3 percent to 50,600 won. Hyundai owns 34 percent of Kia. Toyota gained 1.1 percent to 3,300 yen in Tokyo.


(From news reports)


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