SEOUL Dec 1 The top three shareholders of South Korean electronics retailer Himart, who own 57.6 percent of the company, are to sell their stakes in deal estimated to be worth nearly 1 trillion won ($875.12 million), its biggest shareholder Eugene Corp said on Thursday.
"The stake sale is to help Himart re-emerge as a new, transparent company. The sale process will kick off as soon as possible," Eugene spokesman told Reuters, declining to give further details on the deal's value or potential buyers.
Latest reports of management conflicts between Eugene and Himart CEO Sun Jong-koo had fuelled speculation that one or both of the parties would clean its stake in the firm, sending shares of Himart down 17 percent in a week.
Eugene Corp, the biggest shareholder, controls 31.3 percent of the electronics retailer, and Himart CEO Sun Jong-koo owns 17.4 percent, HI Consortium 8.9 percent.
Their combined stake in Himart is worth about 980 billion won based on Thursday's closing price.
Himart shares, which debuted the main KOSPI market in late-June this year, ended down 3 percent on Thursday, while Eugene shares spiked by daily limit of 15 percent compared with broader market's 3.7 percent gain.
($1 = 1142.7000 Korean won) (Reporting by Jungyoun Park; Editing by David Chance)