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

Lynne Hanson
October 14, 2017

Samsung Electronics chief executive and vice chair Kwon Oh-hyun has announced his resignation from the company, describing the company as suffering from an 'unprecedented crisis inside out'. Despite the spectacular performance, CEO Kwon said the company was in the throes of an "unprecedented crisis" as he announced his intention to step down.

His resignation comes as the company struggles to overcome a bribery scandal that sent Lee Jae-Yong, its de-facto head and heir to the Samsung empire, to jail.

. Kwon claimed he had been thinking about leaving "for quite some time" and could "no longer put it off" - The BBC reports. For the third quarter of 2017, Samsung expects to make around 14.5 trillion won (around $12.8 billion) in operating profit off 62 trillion won (around $54.7 billion) in revenue, according to The Verge. "But (at the moment) we are hard pressed to read future trends and find new growth engines", Kwon said. While the latest financial results show Samsung's business units operating smoothly, that in itself may present risks for Kwon, said Park Ju-gun, who tracks corporate executives at CEO Score.

While Samsung Group is South Korea's top conglomerate, with businesses ranging from smartphones to hotels - it has had no "Plan B" for taking big decisions following Lee's arrest, people familiar with the matter have said.

Samsung expects to pull in 62 trillion won ($54.9 billion) in revenue and 14.5 trillion won ($12.8 billion) in profit for the three months ending September 30, a near 300% increase in profit compared to the same period past year.

Lee was convicted of bribing former South Korean President Park Geun-hye and sentenced to five years for bribery, hiding assets overseas, embezzlement, and perjury in August.

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Kwon is stepping down as head of Samsung Electronics' device solutions division, which includes the semiconductor business, and will not seek re-election as a member of the company's board when his term ends next March.

"Samsung's CEO-level leadership has remained largely unchanged for past three years, which is like an eternity in the fast-changing tech industry", said the analyst.

In a statement, the man known as "Mr Chip" said the time had come to "start anew with new spirit and young leadership".

Other reports by TheDailyFarc

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