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SNU Lab Venture Hits 100 Billion-won Jackpot

Posted January. 13, 2005 22:53,   


A venture firm established by a university laboratory will be listed on KOSDAQ, the first of its kind.

According to the KOSDAQ Committee and Market on January 13, “SNU Precision Co.,” founded by Professor Park Hee-jae and graduates of the Department of Aerospace Engineering at the Seoul National University (SNU), is expected to be listed on the KOSDAQ Market on January 25 following its public offering for subscription.

It is unprecedented for a venture set up by a college lab to be listed on the KOSDAQ.

SNU Precision was established by five graduate researchers and academic advisor Park at the mechanical engineering laboratory in February 1998, which is the first start-up venture company at SNU. The venture, which produces TFT-LCD precision measurement equipment, currently ranks number one in market share in the world.

The start-up did not come without difficulties. The seed money of 50 million won needed for the start-up was drawn with alumni and researchers chipping in. In making a new product, professor Park and the graduate students had to stay up countless nights at the school lab for research.

“After the establishment that started out with five researchers, we were able to raise profits from 2000. Our company has been growing rapidly since the development of TFT-LCD precision measurement system in late 2002,” the management and planning team manager Seo Kang-seok at SNU Precision said.

The venture firm posted 31.6 billion won in sales from the first to third quarter (January-September) last year and 13.9 billion won in operating margin during the same period.

Based on the offered price per share of 27,000 won (face value of 500 won), the market capitalization after being listed is estimated at 101.8 billion won.

The largest shareholder and representative Park has 27.42 percent-shareholding (appraised value of 27.9 billion won).

Although SNU Precision has its focus on the LCD measurement system at the moment, the KOSDAQ listing will prompt it to expand the business to semiconductors and auto components measurement initiatives.

Jin-Hup Song jinhup@donga.com legman@donga.com