New boss at Samsung as top jobs reshuffled

City A.M. Reporter
SAMSUNG Electronics, Asia’s technology powerhouse battling Apple for smartphone supremacy, is shifting its chief executive to a new role as the family-run parent company prepares to transfer ownership control to a third generation.

Choi Gee-sung, 61, will assume the new role of head of corporate strategy at Samsung Group, which presides over some 81 companies including its flagship, Samsung Electronics.

In a career with Samsung spanning more than three decades, Choi has worked in all of the group’s main business divisions, from semiconductors to home appliances, televisions and telecoms, before taking over as chief executive in 2010.

Crucially, he is widely seen as chief mentor to Jay Y Lee, son of Samsung Electronics’ chairman Lee Kun-hee and the group’s heir apparent. Jay Y Lee, 43, stays as chief operating officer. The South Korean group named Kwon Oh-hyun as its new CEO. Currently head of Samsung’s components business, which oversees chips and display, Kwon cemented Samsung’s position in memory chips, where it has almost 50 per cent global market share, and expanded into non-memory, or logic chips, which now account for 40 per cent of Samsung’s overall semiconductor revenue.

Samsung said earlier yesterday it will spend $1.9bn on a new logic chip line to make processors for mobile devices amid explosive demand for smartphones and tablets.