A biography of the late Chairman and founder of Hanjin Group, Cho Choong-hoon, titled ‘Business as an Art’, has been published and is now available to the public.
An event, to launch the book detailing Mr. Cho’s extraordinary achievements, was held during the 70th anniversary celebration of the Hanjin Group, which took place at the West Tower Grand Ballroom of the Grand Hyatt Incheon on November 2nd.
Mr. Cho established ‘Hanjin Transportation’ in 1945, in Haean-dong, Incheon, with the company name meaning ‘March of the Koreans’. Mr. Cho went on to follow an expansion path in the transportation industry creating land, sea, and air transportation corporations, including Korean Air and Hanjin Shipping. The corporation encompassed a full range of global logistics and transportation companies, now known as the Hanjin Group. Mr. Cho passed away in 2002 but his powerful legacy lives on.
Hanjin Group has been working on the publication of a commemorative biography of Mr. Cho since 2010, to honor his passion and achievements and also detailing the challenges he faced as a young man when he launched Hanjin 70 years ago. With all credit to Mr. Cho and thanks to his solid management philosophy he went on to become the leader of the nation’s transportation industry.
The publication of ‘Business as an Art’ is a very meaningful work in terms of being a historical recording of the Hanjin corporate story, based on the founder’s life story; it is also a fascinating insight into the history of Korea’s transportation and logistics industry.
The biography, ‘Business as an Art’ contains nine chapters and 392 pages; ‘An Odyssey at Sea’, about Cho’s childhood and the founding and early days of Hanjin Transportation; ‘The Legend of Quy Nhon’, describing the transportation business opportunity in Vietnam; ‘Opening Up the Skies’, detailing the takeovers and development of Korean Air Lines; ‘Carrying the World on Its Wings’; ‘Realizing the Dream of Becoming a Shipping Magnate’; ‘Variations on the ‘Transportation’ Theme’; ‘The Passionate Citizen Diplomat’; ‘Caretaker of the Forest of Talent’ and ‘Master of the Art of Life and Business’.
The biography follows Mr. Cho’s journey transforming the business ‘into an art’ with his philosophy and originality and his overriding principle of serving his country with patriotism, wisdom, diplomacy and education.
The work is destined to become revered as a valuable record of the economic and diplomatic history of the Republic of Korea. It includes hidden episodes and unseen photographs, such as the image of a dockside ship unloading at Quy Nhon Port, Vietnam, incidents illustrating Korea-Japan economic diplomacy and the manufacturing of Korean combat equipment.
Former Prime Minister Lee Hong-koo and Son Gil-seung, former President of the Federation of the Korean Industries, who were close associates of Mr. Cho, wrote testimonials for the book. Mr. Lee said: "I recommend this book to young people and students who are sketching out their life plans. Cho Choong –hoon, who was an avid reader, would agree with me on this advice." Mr.Son said: “We rarely see business books based on a beautiful philosophy.” And he recommends the book with the comment : “Though Cho has passed on, his story is alive and breathing. If you dream of accomplishing great things as a businessman, entrepreneur, or executive, you should not miss this opportunity to meet and learn from Cho Choong-hoon through this book.”
Lee Im-gwang, biographer and former reporter of Forbes Korea, is the author of ‘Business as an Art’. Over a period of four and a half years he collected live testimonies from interviews with more than 40 senior representatives of the Hanjin Group and acquaintances of Mr Cho.