The Korea Herald


[Market Eye] SK Telecom outlook rosy after spinoff, stock split: analysts

By Jie Ye-eun

Published : Oct. 25, 2021 - 18:04

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SK Telecom’s headquarters in central Seoul (SK Telecom) SK Telecom’s headquarters in central Seoul (SK Telecom)
The stock value of South Korea’s top wireless carrier SK Telecom could go up if the company’s nontelecom spinoff and 5-for-1 stock split plans take effect in November, analysts of major brokerage houses said Monday.

“The spinoff plan will boost SK Telecom’s corporate value. Its affiliated companies’ values will likely be reevaluated as well. ... We highly recommend investors to buy the stock before the trading suspension” ahead of the spinoff, Ahn Jae-min, an analyst at NH Investment & Securities, said in a report.

The market observer forecast that SK Telecom and SK Square’s accumulated market capitalization after the spinoff will increase to 28.8 trillion won ($24.7 billion). That is 6.5 trillion won more than the market valuation marked at the closing bell Monday.

Yuanta Securities Korea’s analyst Choi Nam-gon chose SK Telecom as a top pick in the telecommunications sector. Lifting foreign ownership limits on the related industry’s stock is a positive factor to the share price. The company stock’s discount rate could also drop below 30 percent, depending on its affiliated companies’ competitiveness, the market watcher said.

Other market data showed that local brokerages’ consensus price target on SK Telecom is 394,444 won per share so far, 27.5 percent higher than Monday’s closing price of 309,500 won per share. The highest target price suggested by one local brokerage was 440,000 won apiece.

In June, SK Telecom’s shareholders approved the company’s plan to launch a nontelecom spinoff in the latest move to make aggressive investments in new tech and semiconductor businesses, as well as to conduct a 5-for-1 stock split aimed at improving shareholder value.

Under the spinoff plan, SK Telecom’s shares will be divided approximately 3-for-2 between the remaining telecom-focused entity and the new investment firm. Trading of the wireless carrier will be suspended from Tuesday to Nov. 26 before resuming on Nov. 29. SK Square is set to be relisted on Nov. 29.