Samsung CEO Kwon Oh-hyun resigns amid strong guidance for Q3

Friday 13 October 2017 | 08:57 CET | News
Samsung Electronics has announced the resignation of CEO Oh-Hyun Kwon, in charge of Samsung Display and the company’s Device Solutions Business. Kwon said he will not seek re-election as a member of the board of directors and chairman of the board when his term ends in March of next year. 

The announcement comes after Samsung gave earnings guidance for a strong third quarter, saying it sees sales rising to KRW 61-63 trillion from 47.8 trillion the year before. Operating profit is expected to leap to KRW 14.4-14.6 trillion from 5.2 trillion year-on-year. It was last year that the company had to recall its Galaxy Note 7 but it seems the company has now recovered, also in light of its recent Galaxy Note 8 launch. Strategy Analytics said the phone was the world's top selling Android smartphone in the second quarter. 

In an emotional letter sent to all employees, Kwon said that while announcing his retirement was the most difficult thing for him to do, he believed it was the right time and in the best interest of the company, amid continuing controversy around Samsung vice-chairman Lee Jae-yong, arrested on charges of bribery. Lee Jae-yong was widely expected to succeed his father as head of the group. 

Kwon did not mention the scandal, but said the company now needed a new leader: “As we are confronted with unprecedented crisis inside out, I believe that time has now come for the company start anew, with a new spirit and young leadership to better respond to challenges arising from the rapidly changing IT industry.” 

Kwon joined Samsung in 1985 as a researcher of the company’s Semiconductor Research Institute in the US. He also served as president and head of the System LSI Division and as president and head of the Semiconductor Business before becoming CEO of the company in 2012. He also has served as the CEO of Samsung Display since 2016.

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