Quick to Brace for Change
Construction firm plans to expand operations in S.E. Asian country
Kumho Engineering and Construction Co. won 12 good design marks during the first half of this year, the largest number among the construction firms in the country. The Ministry of Knowledge and Economy with the support of the Korea Design Promotion Institute, manages the good design mark award system in the country. The good design mark sinners are selected by experts in the areas of beauty, function and economic viability based on a fair evaluation.
President Lee Yon-koo said his company will set an eye-catching performance record this year over last year, with the company resuming its overseas construction projects for the first time in 22 years last year. The company launched a large commercial and residential project in Vietnam, "Kumho-Asiana Plaza,"in Ho Chi Minh City and winning the project to build an airport in the Middle East, he said.
The Ceo, who met the press on the occasion of the 1st anniversary of his inauguration, said overseas construction market is very promising unlike the 1980s,
ssquashing any fear of the overseas market with the construction industry experiencing somewhat overheated rush to win overseas construction projects in recent months by Korean builders.
He said Korea's global image has improved a great deal, along with construction technologies by Korean builders, their capital and the ability to collect information on overseas construction market.
President Lee has been credit for bringing a lot of positive changes to the company since he began leading the company. During the past year, the company has established Vietnam as its second launch pad for its overseas operations. The company's "Kumho-Asiana Plaza"project has been going well, showing some 30 percent progress. The company also is committed to building some 2,000 residential housing units in the designated housing complex near Ho Chi Minh City, along with a 27-hole golf course.
The company is in the middle of evaluating a project to build an urban town project with facilities for exhibition, expo, business, culture and residence.
The company is also in the United Arab Emirates with undertaking a number of projects including the control tower of Abu Dhabi airport and the Dubai World Center airport which is in the final stage of construction. The company plans to participate in the bidding for the Arabian Canal project.
The company's heavy engagement in overseas projects doesn't mean it will reduce its domestic operations. President Lee plans to balance its operations at home and abroad. At home, the company will focus on large development projects, rather than just winning projects for undertaking. Its housing development projects will be centered on the development of the site of Dankuk University in Hannam-dong, southern Seoul, truly a choicy site in the capital city. The company is in the middle of getting an approval and license for selling the apartment units when the project is completed. The company plans to build some 10,000 residential housing units across the country this year.
In response to the sluggish housing market this year, the company will upgrade the quality of its housing construction in terms of design and marketing so that they will stand out from other housing units built by rival firms.
The company plans to open a residential cultural hall in Daechi-dong, Seoul, which is intended to display various cultural events to make it a diversified cultural space for the residents in the complex.
The company had an outstanding year last year with the sales, project orders and backlog of orders breaking the records, all surpassing the existing records since the company began. Last year, the company's sales amounted to 1.61 trillion won and operating profit 122.3 billion won, both figures were some 30 percent from last year.
President Lee boosted the sales for this year by 50 percent from last year to 2.5 trillion won and project orders to 5.7 trillion won, figuring that no problems would occur if the company does well in civil, overseas, plant and environment related projects.
President Lee credited the company's recent achievements to all employees of the company, officers in particular. nw
President Lee Yon-koo of Kumho E&C.
(photos from above) A fire-preventive door designed by Kumho E&C, which won the good design mark; A design of Gwangju Gallery which won the good design mark.