[THE INVESTOR] Samsung Electronics is highly likely to announce a major reshuffle of its top brass, including the successor of outgoing Vice Chairman Kwon Oh-hyun after a board meeting on Oct. 31, according to industry sources.
Kwon, one of the three co-CEOs along with Yoon Boo-keun and Shin Jong-kyun, early this month offered his resignation, urging to bring a breath of fresh air into the Korean tech giant that faces an unprecedented crisis caused by the absence of the top leadership.
He has supervised Samsung on behalf of heir Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong and Choi Gee-sung, former chief of the now-dismembered Future Strategy Office, who have been jailed in the ongoing trial on bribery charges. Chairman Lee Kun-hee has been hospitalized since 2014 after a massive heart attack.
Among the candidates who may take over the CEO role of the semiconductor and display business units are: Kim Ki-nam, president at the same business division; Jeon Dong-soo, former head of Samsung SDS who has been leading the medical equipment unit Samsung Medison; and Jun Young-hyun, president of battery-making unit Samsung SDI.
Kim, among others, is highly cited to replace Kwon as he has received credit for contributing to the stunning growth of the chip business unit.
Co-CEO Yoon who is leading the home appliances business unit and Lee Sang-hoon, the firm’s chief financial officer, are also cited as possible candidates to replace Kwon as vice chairman who oversees Samsung’s overall operations.
The long-delayed executive reshuffle is also likely to be announced soon following the board meeting. The annual reshuffle that is usually carried out in December was not announced last year due to the presidential corruption scandal involving some big companies, including Samsung.
Some business units are also expected to undergo a modest restructuring to improve efficiency overall. Sources say Samsung Electronics is likely to set up a control tower office to combine other tech units such as Samsung SDI and Samsung SDS.
A Samsung spokesperson declined to comment on the new CEO and other rumored leadership reshuffle.
Meanwhile, Samsung Electronics is scheduled to announce its third-quarter earnings on Oct. 31. In its earnings guidance released earlier this month, the firm said the estimated operating profit during the July-September period will reach a record 14.3 trillion won (US$12.7 billion), while revenue will stand at 61.9 trillion won.
By Kim Young-won (firstname.lastname@example.org)