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Korea Exim News

KEXIM Commits KRW 20 Trillion in Supports to Foster Korean "Hidden Champions"

Date 2010.01.05 View 33241
□ Korea Eximbank (, President Kim Dongsoo) plans to nurture 300 Hidden Champions through the provision of KRW 2 trillion in supports over the next 10 years for a total of KRW 20 trillion won.

◎ The Bank has announced the first group of twelve Hidden Champions selected among partner enterprises for their advanced technology and growth potential. In 2010, the program will be in full swing as over one hundred Hidden Champions will be chosen for the program.

□ A selection committee took into consideration a variety of factors such as technological advancement, growth potential, CEO capacity, and financial soundness in choosing the first group of enterprises. Silfine, Amotech, and Nextchip were among the companies selected.

□ Companies selected for the program will receive benefits such as preferred interest rates, reduced fees, credit line increases as well as funding for R&D and overseas expansion.
◎ In addition, selectees will receive expanded financial services (Export Finance, Foreign Investment Finance, Import Finance, Foreign Exchange, Performance Bonds, etc.) as well as non-financial services (Country Risk, Foreign Investment Information, International Contract Law Advisor, Exchange Control, etc.).
◎ Korea Eximbank will also select twenty financial consultants and assign them to each selectee to analyze the different needs of each Hidden Champion in order to provide custom tailored services.

□ The first group of Hidden Champion represent a variety of sectors and industries such as the electric and electronic sector (4), machinery & metalworking sector (3), chemical sector (3), and other sectors (2). In particular, 6 of the 12 enterprises are engaged in new growth industries such as green technology.
◎ Although these companies are SMEs, they possess a high level of technological potential as each company has on average 26 patents and an R&D investment rate of 7.17% (the average investment in R&D among SMEs is 2.06% of total sales).
-These Hidden Champions average KRW 64.8 billion in sales, KRW 46.4 billion in total exports, and a 73% ratio of exports to total sales. These figures attest to the drive of these companies to expand global marketshare.

□ The Bank defines "Hidden Champions" as small and medium companies with over USD 100 million in exports and potential for securing a sizeable marketshare in the global arena.
◎ In nurturing the Hidden Champions, Korea Eximbank plans to contribute to the national economy with USD 48 billion in additional exports, 490,000 new jobs, $25.6 billion in GDP, and KRW 500 billion in tax revenues.
※ Professor Hermann Simon coined the term Hidden Champion in reference to companies which rank 1-3 in the market with less than USD 4 billion in sales but is not a well-known brand name.

□ Korea Eximbank will fully support the Hidden Champions to serve as a backbone between large and small enterprises as well as to create jobs for sustained economic growth.
◎ 99.5% of enterprises (manufacturing) in Korea with over 5 employees are SMEs; however, large corporations account for 69.2% of total exports (2008 figures).

□ The Bank has pursued the Hidden Champion project with utmost priority in terms of support for SMEs. A taskforce for the project was launched in April and external consultants analyzed project feasibility over a four month period beginning in July.
◎ Korea Eximbank plans to develop financial and non-financial services and programs for the efficient promotion of Hidden Champions such as capitalization and fund programs and the development of networks between domestic and foreign specialized companies.