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SK chairman calls for change of SK Telecom’s company name

SK chairman calls for change of SK Telecom’s company name

Posted September. 24, 2019 07:27,   

Updated September. 24, 2019 07:27


An official from SK Group said Monday that a considerable number of the group’s subsidiaries are getting ready to go beyond their conventional business and embrace artificial intelligence (AI), Big Data, and information and communication technology (ICT). “Changing a company name would be one of the mid- and long-term tasks,” the official added.

“A term ‘Telecom,’ which gives an impression that the company is a common carrier, should be excluded from the company name,” SK Corporation Chairman Chey Tae-won said early this month. “The name needs to be changed so that the company can be thought of as an AI-focused company,” he said, indicating that SK Telecom should expand its business based on data and AI and also reflect this in its company name.

Chey pointed out the need to change the name of some subsidiaries at the group’s Icheon Forum held last month. Saying that many of the group’s subsidiaries are named with words such as “Energy” or “Chemicals,” which often imply environment disruption or the subject of social criticism, the chairman said that energy firms should now place a top priority to “environment” and such direction should be reflected in the company name. “The time will come when environment makes money,” he stressed.

“SK Telecom’s mobile-based navigation service ‘T Map’ and its taxi hailing app ‘T Map Taxi’ after all contain data that can be used to predict customers’ driving habits and the probability of accidents,” the SK official said. “If we have thus far made a profit by selling the data, going forward, we will become a company that handles the data and makes a business model out of it.” Views that the change of the service brand “T” is the company’s task that cannot be put off any longer also predominate within SK Telecom.

Dong-Il Seo dong@donga.com