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KT Will Launch a New Professional Baseball Team in January

KT Will Launch a New Professional Baseball Team in January

Posted December. 28, 2007 03:54,   


KT, one of the largest communications companies in Korea, will create a new professional baseball team based on the current Hyundai team. Shin Sang-woo, director of the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO), said in a press conference held yesterday at Baseball Hall in Dogok-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul that KT will create a new team.

KT’s new team will be based in Seoul and use a stadium in Mok-dong as its home field, which will effectively make Hyundai disappear into the ashes of history 12 years after its creation in 1996.


KBO Director Shin suggested that KT take over Hyundai at the end of November this year, after acquisition negotiations of Nonghyup and STX had broken off right before they reached an agreement. KT, after a series of negotiations, agreed to create a new professional baseball team, and the launch ceremony will take place in January next year.

Controversy over Acquisition Price-

KT will dissolve the existing team and create a new one because if it does not, it needs to take out a loan from Nonghyup and continue to run the team with 13.1 billion won as Hyundai has been.

However, KBO is not charging KT a cent for its team to play in Seoul, and KT only needs to pay 6 billion won to join the professional league, which is at the center of controversy. The six billion won KT needs to pay is 1/8 of what Hyundai had to pay in 1995, and 14 billion won was the fee when it acquired Taepyeongyang. KBO’s plan of using the money from KT along with the 14 billion won it raised as a baseball development fund to pay management debts will create backlash among the seven other teams.

Responses of Other Teams-

The only team that welcomes the move is Hyundai. Coach Kim Shi-jin said, “I’m glad that there will remain eight teams next year. It has not decided yet whether the current coaching staff will remain the same. If I get a chance, I will turn the team to excel and help players display their utmost performance.”

The other seven teams are in unison about the dramatic devaluation of a new professional team. Whether there will be seven or eight teams in the professional league will be determined early next year at a KBO board of directors meeting with representatives of eight teams present.