Samsung is not letting this year’s uncertainty affect its long-term hiring and R&D investment strategy, both of which remain at historic heights. The company today revealed its research and development investments for the first three quarters of the year hit the equivalent of $14.3 billion. Compared to the same period in 2019, that’s a $541 million increase.
For added context, Samsung estimates this latest R&D budget to be equivalent to 9.1% of its annual sales. In terms of immediate output, this accelerated commitment to innovation resulted in Samsung adding nearly 5,000 patents to its South Korean portfolio in Q3 2020 alone. The company also registered 6,321 patents in the U.S. over the same three-month period.
Apple remains Samsung’s top customer
In terms of enterprise performance, Apple was still Samsung’s top B2B customer in the third quarter of the year, followed by Best Buy, Deutsche Telekom, Tektronix Hong Kong, and Verizon, in that order. The big five was responsible for 13% of Samsung’s total quarterly sales, the company said. While that percentage isn’t too different from the previous quarter, the list of Samsung’s largest corporate clients is now missing Huawei – for obvious reasons.
Finally, even Samsung’s recent hiring spree isn’t showing signs of slowing down. The company’s management often reiterated the importance of securing top talent across all relevant industries in the last few months, so this is hardly a surprise.
For the record, Samsung’s workforce in South Korea has reached all-time highs as of the end of September and currently sits at 108,998 employees, 3,700 more than nine months ago.