[THE INVESTOR] SK Networks, the nation’s second largest car rental provider, on Oct. 19 denied news reports that it plans to acquire water purifier company Coway.
“We have never considered acquiring Coway. The rumors that one of our affiliates will acquire the firm are not true,” an SK Networks spokesperson told The Investor.
Since SK Networks is the parent company of the country’s second largest water purifier rental business unit SK Magic, it was considered as one of the possible candidates for acquiring Coway. Some industry watchers speculated that SK Telecom, which has enough funding power to buy Coway -- valued at around 2 trillion won (US$1.76 billion) -- would acquire the water purifier firm.
Meanwhile, private equity firm MBK Partners, which is keen to gain some bargaining power, said it is not in a hurry to sell Coway, while also denying rumors about SK affiliates.
The PEF has announced that it has already
secured around 1.35 trillion won through selling some shares, which exceeds 1.2 trillion won that that it spent to buy 31 percent stake in Coway back in 2012 from Woongjin Group.
Currently, Woongjin is the only company that is showing interest in acquiring Coway. It announced in August that its subsidiary Woongjin Thinkbig is willing to reacquire the water purifier company.
The company also confirmed that it currently has prepared around 1.4 trillion won for the acquisition and has laid out plans for securing the remaining amount that it needs to acquire Coway through issuing new stocks and receiving funds from Woongjin Group.
By Song Seung-hyun (email@example.com)