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Brotherly dispute at Kumho ends with less than reconciliation

A dispute between Kumho Petrochemical and Kumho Asiana Group that also placed strain on the two brothers that run the companies has apparently come to an end after the former withdrew its legal complaint against the latter, the companies said Thursday.

Kumho Petrochemical, run by young brother Park Chan-koo, said it has dropped all legal suits against Kumho Asiana Group, which is run by Park's older brother Sam-koo.


The companies have been mired in a number of legal disputes.

The latest suit raised by Kumho Petrochemical sought to prevent a proposed merger between Kumho Terminal and Kumho & Company, a special purpose company set up by the older Park. The company claimed the merger would turn Kumho Terminal into a cash cow for Park and his special purpose firm.

Kumho Petrochemical said the legal dispute no longer seemed necessary when the companies' very survival was hanging by a thread.

"With worsening global economic conditions and growing uncertainties threatening South Korea's economy, many local companies are currently facing life or death issues," it said.

"Under such circumstances, Kumho Petrochemical sought to protect its interest, as well as those of its shareholders, and such efforts had inevitably caused dispute between some economic players and faced limitations created by local rules and customs," it said of its reason for withdrawing its complaints against Kumho Asiana.

Kumho Asiana Group welcomed the decision, saying it respected and appreciated the move.

Meanwhile, Kumho Asiana said it has successfully completed the merger between Kumho Terminal and Kumho & Company, creating Kumho Holdings Firm that will set sail Friday. (Yonhap)

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