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Outside Directors, Ownership Structure and Firm Profitability in Korea

Author

Listed:
  • Dong-Sung Cho
  • Jootae Kim

    (Dankook University in Korea)

Abstract

The contribution of outside directors to firm performance has been shown to be inconsistent. Korean companies first began in 1998 to introduce outside directors to carry out governance reform. This paper analyses the impact of outside directors on corporate performance during the governance reform movement undertaken in Korea in 1999 as well as the moderating effect of the large shareholder and managerial ownership rate. We hypothesised a positive relationship between outside director effectiveness (outside director participation rate) and firm profitability, a negative moderating effect in terms of large shareholder ownership and managerial ownership, and a positive moderating effect when it comes to blockholder ownership. This moderating relationship is considered in order to investigate the role of large shareholders under the Korean governance structure. Our empirical analysis showed that outside directors had a weak positive impact, and that a large shareholder ownership rate and a block shareholder ownership rate moderated this relationship in a negative fashion. The managerial ownership rate did not show any significant moderating effects. We thus conclude that it is too early to assess the impact of outside directors on corporate performance, and that Korean companies exhibit an "owner-controlled" governance structure; that is, they are governed by large shareholders who have demonstrated a resistance to attempts to bring about governance reform through such means as the introduction of outside directors. Outside shareholders were found to possess insufficient power to monitor large controlling shareholders. This paper seeks to make a contribution to the field by conducting an analysis of governance structure in Korea in the aftermath of the currency crisis, as well as of outside directors in emerging economies, a subject rarely dealt with in governance studies. Copyright (c) 2007 The Authors; Journal compilation (c) 2007 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Dong-Sung Cho & Jootae Kim, 2007. "Outside Directors, Ownership Structure and Firm Profitability in Korea," Corporate Governance: An International Review, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(2), pages 239-250, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:corgov:v:15:y:2007:i:2:p:239-250
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Amon Chizema & Jootae Kim, 2010. "Outside Directors on Korean Boards: Governance and Institutions," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(1), pages 109-129, January.
    2. Byung-Seong Min & Peter Verhoeven, 2013. "Outsider Board Activity, Ownership Structure and Firm Value: Evidence from Korea," International Review of Finance, International Review of Finance Ltd., vol. 13(2), pages 187-214, June.
    3. Ramiz ur Rehman & Inayat Ullah Mangla, 2010. "Corporate Governance and Performance of Financial Institutions in Pakistan: A Comparison between Conventional and Islamic Banks in Pakistan," The Pakistan Development Review, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics, vol. 49(4), pages 461-475.
    4. Young Kyun Chang & Won-Yong Oh & Jee Hyun Park & Myoung Gyun Jang, 2017. "Exploring the Relationship Between Board Characteristics and CSR: Empirical Evidence from Korea," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 140(2), pages 225-242, January.
    5. Min, Byung S. & Bowman, Robert G., 2015. "Corporate governance, regulation and foreign equity ownership: Lessons from Korea," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 145-155.
    6. repec:eee:iburev:v:27:y:2018:i:1:p:269-280 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. repec:gam:jsusta:v:9:y:2017:i:10:p:1883-:d:115599 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Mukhopadhyay, Jhuma & Chakraborty, Indrani, 2017. "Foreign institutional investment, business groups and firm performance: Evidence from India," Research in International Business and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 39(PA), pages 454-465.
    9. repec:eee:reveco:v:51:y:2017:i:c:p:82-98 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Isabel-María García-Sánchez, 2010. "The effectiveness of corporate governance: board structure and business technical efficiency in Spain," Central European Journal of Operations Research, Springer;Slovak Society for Operations Research;Hungarian Operational Research Society;Czech Society for Operations Research;Österr. Gesellschaft für Operations Research (ÖGOR);Slovenian Society Informatika - Section for Operational Research;Croatian Operational Research Society, vol. 18(3), pages 311-339, September.

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