Woori's Exemplary Social Work

Financial group hires 2,500 interns and provides special loans to the economically disadvantaged while spurring overseas operation




Hhairman Lee Pal-seung of Woori Financial Group has been pushing the group¡¯s strategy this year to enhance its competitive power by strengthening risk management, expanding the base to generate more profit, securing a leading position for its non-banking sector, speeding up globalization of the group¡¯s operations, and strategic social contributions.
The strategies are aimed at reforming the management infrastructure to maximize the group¡¯s value amid stiffening competition among rival financial groups, especially since the takeover of Korea Exchange Bank by Hana Financial Group. The group aims to push the quality growth of its profits for sound health amid worsening financial market conditions exacerbated by the European debt crisis.
The chairman is focused on the expansion of the group¡¯s global operations through long-and-mid term strategies to continuously promote expansion in its global presence, especially in its non-banking sector affiliates. The group will not rule out M&As and spinning off some of their businesses to boost their market presence. The ¡°OneDo¡± campaign to reform the group will also be pushed as long as Chairman Lee is running the group. The campaign, which was kicked off in 2009, is aimed at creating Woori Financial Group¡¯s unique ¡°DNA¡± and has collected 126,000 suggestions on reform from 2,500 staff members of the group, which amounts to five for each employee.
On the card is a plan to expand the overseas operation through M&As if needed and if the right opportunities arise to find new growth motors. The group wants to keep its foreign exchange liquidity level high to be ready for the uncertainty of the international financial markets and maintain the soundness of its overseas network.
The group has also decided to boost its social contributions as one of its major management plans for this year.
The group launched the ¡°Woori Multinational Scholarship Foundation¡± in January to support multicultural families by providing scholarships and other educational support.
All affiliates of the group shared in the funding of the 20 billion won fund to set up the foundation and will give a certain portion of their net income to the foundation every year, which will go to the children of poor families under the ¡°Hope Dream Fund,¡± which so far has been provided to 43 children and will be increased to 100 in the near future.
The group also has decided to expand its loans to financially poor people by increasing the number of branches to eight from six that deal with minimum credit loans around the country and the available funding to 30 billion won from 20 billion won. The group has also decided to provide up to 15 percent of Woori Bank¡¯s net profit to fund the ¡°New Hope Seed Loans¡± provided to the general public on credit.
The group has also decided to increase the non-bank loans provided to those who have no mortgage to support bank loans from its savings bank affiliates such as Woori Together Loan and the Sunlight Loan, a short-term loan provided by Woori Savings and Loan Bank.
The group has also expanded the intern system designed to ease the unemployment rate for youths in Korea. Since 2009, Woori Financial Group employed 2,500 youths as interns every year and about 2 to 30 percent of them were employed every year as regular employees of the group affiliates.
The group also has increased the number of high school graduates hired as staff. The Group hired 154 in all last year and it will expand the number this year. By bank, Woori Bank hired 105 of them last year; Kwangju Bank 14; Kyungnam Bank 1; and Woori Investment and Securities 25.
The group has wasted no time to help farm villages. Every subsidiary and 11 affiliates of the group signed a sisterhood tie with a farm village and hold two regular exchange meetings to give funds to build village town halls and buy rice from them to be donated to social relief organizations around the country every year. ¡±

Chairman Lee Pal-seung of Woori Financial Group.

Chairman Lee at a ceremony marking the establishment of the Woori Multinational Scholarship Foundation in 2010.

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