Samsung CEO resigns amid ‘unprecedented crisis’
In an unexpected move, Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman and CEO Oh-Hyun Kwon today announced that he’s stepping down. He will resign as the head of the Device Solutions Business and will also not seek re-election as a member of the board of directors and the Chairman of the Board after March 2018 when his term ends.
The announcement came after Samsung announced its Q3 2017 earnings guidance. It expects to post record profits for the second quarter straight.
In a letter sent to employees, Kwon said that announcing his retirement was the most difficult thing for him to do. However, he believes that the time is right and that this decision is in the best interest of the company.
Samsung CEO Resigns
“It is something I had been thinking long and hard about for quite some time. It has not been an easy decision, but I feel I can no longer put it off,” he said. Kwon added that as the company is confronted with an “unprecedented crisis” inside out, he believes that it’s now time for the company to start fresh, with a new spirit and young leadership.
Kwon joined Samsung in 1985 as a researcher in its Semiconductor Research Institute in the United States. He has been with the company for 32 years. Kwon also served as president and head of the System LSI Division and the Semiconductor Business.
He took over as CEO of Samsung Electronics in 2012. He has also been the CEO of Samsung Display of 2016, a position that he’s going to give up as well.
Kwon has been the de-facto chief at Samsung ever since the conglomerate’s heir Lee Jae-yong was arrested and later imprisoned on bribery and embezzlement charges.