Kyongwon Industrial Co. was established on April 26, 1957. Mr, Woo, Seung-Hwan invested the entire capital ₩2 million established as a mining business to mainly supply lime stones. In 1961 Kyongwon Industrial Co. planned to participate in cement business, because it forecasted that the supply would face its limitation soon with then-cement production capacity for national economic development. At last, Kyongwon Industrial Co. drew a plan to construct a cement plant in May, 1961. On December 21, 1962, Kyongwon Industrial Co. submitted the application for permission of a cement manufacturing plant to Economic Planning Board and was reported in media as the final winner in the competition for 5th cement end user in October 30, 1963. On November 27, 1963, the Foreign Investment Promotion Commission under the National Supreme Committee officially approved the appointment of Kyongwon Industrial Co. as the 5th cement end user. On December 12, 1963, the commission granted permission for a loan contract and approved guarantee liabilities. With this, the dream of Kyongwon Industrial Co. to construct a cement plant was about to come true.
Kyongwon Industrial Co. began plant site survey and site purchase process. The site for plant construction was decided in Ipseok-ri, Songhak-myeon, Jecheon-gun, Chungbuk, and the purchase process for the plant site amounting to total about 200,000 square meters was completed through many difficulties in the early 1965.
On April 1, 1965 the ground-breaking ceremony was performed, On June 21, the company name was changed to Chungbuk Cement Industrial Co. appropriate for cement business. On December 13, 1966, the building completion ceremony was performed in the front of Chungbuk Cement Co. main building in 1 year and 8 months after the initiation of plant construction. At the time of completion, the cement production capacity of the plant was annually 400,000tons for Portland cement (max. 500,000tons). The products were marketed since January 15, 1967.
Chungbuk Cement acquired KS(Korean Standards) certification for type 1 of its major product, Portland cement (KSL 5201), from August 21, 1967. Also it invited Silvy, a famous American industrial management adviser to commission cost analysis and management consulting. On January 1, 1968, it acquired import/export license (No. 744) from Ministry of Commerce & Industry to lay legal foundation for overseas export as well as domestic sales. A series of efforts to improve productivity and quality were sublimated into the management philosophy of Chungbuk Cement to play the primary role in company development. Dream came true.
On April 12, 1968, the founder of current Asia Group, the former chairman Lee, Dong-Ryeong (died in ’92) acquired 50% of Chungbuk Cement shares and became the practical owner. The former chairman Lee, Dong-Ryeong was a 3-time elected congressman as well as a promising entrepreneur who was managing multiple trade and energy related businesses.
In addition, he was very popular as a philanthropist through various education businesses including Mungyeong Educational Foundation. The motivation to acquire Chungbuk Cement Co. which had smallest production capacity and lacked in financial resource as the late starter can be found in the firm will of former chairman Lee, Dong-Ryeong to contribute to national development by investing in infrastructure. Such transfer of company ownership became an important turning point for Chungbuk Cement to develop further, above all, since it was able to secure stable financing source for investment. As it was able to finance huge amount of investment fund for future development as a process industry, it was able to invest in facilities. Secondly, as a new manager with rich experience in company management and passion for national infrastructure industry acquired the company, Chungbuk Cement was able to raise its confidence for growth.
In October, 1973 Chungbuk Cement began review on facility expansion. This was because domestic cement business began to exit from the long-lasting economic stagnation and large construction projects were consecutively initiated, which resulted in economic boom in the industry including rapid increase in domestic cement demand.
In addition, since all domestic cement businesses were expected to have the capacity of international economic scale (annual 1 million tons of production) until 1976, it was mandatory to initiate facility expansion to prevent relative disadvantageous position in domestic market competition. In relation to this, Chungbuk Cement Co. changed its company name to Asia Cement Industrial Co., Ltd. to establish its position as an international cement company with annual production capacity of 1.7 million tons. Asia Cement began the construction for facility expansion by 1.1 million tons on May 11, 1974 after it established facility expansion system. On November 20, 1976, Asia Cement performed the completion ceremony in 2.5 years. The Kiln 3 with daily clinker production capacity of 3,200 ton was completed. This addition of Kiln 3 to existing 1 and 2 has led Asia Cement to jump up to become a global class manufacturer with annual production capacity of 1.7 million tons. Asia Cement designated November 20 as its foundation day to celebrate its meaning. In addition, Asia Cement implemented the initial public offering to finance the fund for facility expansion more smoothly on March 18, 1974 to change into a company appropriate for nation’s democratic economic system.
Asia Cement, which came to have total 2.2 million tons of production capacity due to the completion of Daegu Cement Plant on April 13, 1997, was able to have additional annual production capacity of 1.8 million tons (total 2.3 million tons) by consistent facility improvement on June 30, 1979 and additional 2.3 million tons (total 2.8 million tons) on July 20, 1982.
For Asia Cement, which was relatively in inferior position to other companies in the industry in terms of production capacity, had to expand production capacity as a means of enhancing its competitiveness. On November 1, 1989, Asia Cement began the construction for facility expansion by 1.7 million tons.
In this construction was included the improvement work for Kiln 1. On March 15, 1990, the completion of improvement work for Kiln 1 led to annual production capacity of 2.6 million tons (total 3.1 million tons). On September 18, 1990, Kiln 4 was completed to perform the completion ceremony for 1,7 million facility expansion work. With these, Asia Cement increased its production capacity to 4.5 million tons including 4 million tons for Jecheon Plant and 500,000 tons for Daegu Cement Pulverization Plant.
After this, the completion of facility improvement work for Kiln 3 in Jecheon Plant on April 6, 1999 has led to total production capacity of 5 million tons, through which Asia Cement became one of the global class cement manufacturer.