The combined amount of dividends for Korean business tycoons was tallied at 245 billion won (US$228 million), compared with 240 billion won (US$225 million) in 2013, according to the data released on February 11 by Chaebul.com, a corporate information provider on large businesses.
Samsung Electronics Chairman Lee Kun-hee topped the list with 108 billion won (US$101 million) in dividends this year, up 4.4 percent from 103 billion won (US$96.6 million) last year.
Samsung Electronics alone will pay out 71.5 billion won (US$67.1 million) in dividends to Lee this year, up 78.7 percent from last year. Samsung Electronics hit a record operating income of 36.78 trillion won (US$34.50 billion) last year, up 26.6 percent from a year earlier, on solid demand for smartphones.
Lee’s dividend receipts topped 100 billion won for the fourth straight year.
Chung Mong-koo, chairman of Hyundai Motor Group, came in second with 49.3 billion won (US$46.2 million) in dividends for the year, up 1.9 percent from last year, thanks to strong performances by the group’s flagships such as Hyundai Motor.
SK Group Chairman Chey Tae-won ranked third with 28.6 billion won (US$26.8 million) in dividends this year, surging 20 percent from a year earlier, as SK C&C, the group’s IT service firm, sharply raised its dividend payout. Chey is the largest shareholder in SK C&C with 38 percent.
Other group owners, however, are likely to see their dividend income remain almost unchanged or fall slightly.
Koo Bon-moo, chairman of LG Group, will see a slight fall in dividend receipts at 19.2 billion won (US$18.0 million), followed by Chung Mong-joon, chairman of Hyundai Heavy Industries, the world’s biggest shipyard, with 15.4 billion won (US$14.5 million), a sharp fall from 19.3 billion won (US$18.1 million) a year earlier.
Owners of Hanwha, Doosan, and Hanjin may see their dividend receipts stay unchanged this year, the data showed.