Samsung unveils new co-CEOs in changing of guard after scandal

Samsung is expected to recommend three new heads of divisions as co-CEOs after the next shareholder meeting in March.
Samsung is expected to recommend three new heads of divisions as co-CEOs after the next shareholder meeting in March.PHOTO: AFP

SEOUL (REUTERS) - Samsung Electronics named a new generation of leaders at its three main businesses on Tuesday (Oct 31) as it seeks to steady the ship, following the arrest of group scion Lee Jae Yong earlier this year on charges including bribery.

The South Korean technology giant also announced that chief financial officer (CFO) Lee Sang Hoon had been recommended as the new chairman of the board, and that long-time co-CEOs JK Shin and Yoon Boo Keun would step down.

Kim Ki Nam, 59, was appointed to lead the device solutions division which makes components including memory chips; Koh Dong Jin, 56, would head up IT and mobile communications; and Kim Hyun Suk, 56, would lead consumer electronics, Samsung said in a statement. The changes were effective immediately.

The current three co-CEO management structure would be maintained, it added, without elaborating.

Samsung is expected to recommend the three new heads of divisions as co-CEOs after the next shareholder meeting in March. A Samsung spokesman declined to comment.

Current CFO Lee Sang Hoon would resign from this role, effective immediately, and had been recommended as chairman of the board.

 

The moves come after Samsung Electronics CEO and vice-chairman Kwon Oh Hyun announced on Oct 13 that he planned to step down from management.

Samsung said Yoon and Shin decided to follow Kwon's earlier announcement to resign, making way for new leaders.

Lee Jae Yong was convicted in August and jailed for five years for bribing the country's former president Park Geun Hye, raising concerns of a leadership vacuum at Samsung Electronics.

He has appealed against his conviction and hearings are ongoing.