Tech giant Samsung has announced a major restructuring in its Mobile and Consumer Electronics businesses. As a part of this restructuring, Samsung Electronics Co. is combining 2 out of its 3 business divisions and appointing new CEOs to replace its three co-chief executive officers in its biggest management shakeup since 2017.
The reorganization has been decided under the oversight of de-facto leader and Samsung heir Jay Y Lee and will see the consumer and mobile divisions merged into a newly formed SET Division. The new division will be led by Jong-Hee Han, who has been promoted from the company’s research and development team and will succeed CEOs Dongjin Koh and Hyunsuk Kim who earlier led smartphone and consumer appliances divisions respectively.
Kyehyun Kyung will be taking over Samsung’s Device Solutions group which encompasses its key semiconductor business lines such as memory, logic, processors, and chipmaking for outside consumers.
“Today’s announcement shows the company keeps its performance-driven culture,” said Kyungmook Lee, professor of business management at Seoul National University. “It also shows Jay Y Lee’s willingness to more actively engage in management.”
Since he took back the control in August, Lee has involved himself in major decisions for Samsung and recently traveled to the US to conclude and announce plans for a 17-billion-dollar plant in Taylor, Texas. Currently, too, he is on a trip to the Middle East, where Samsung Electronics and Samsung C&T are participating in multiple projects.
The company believes that the consolation of consumer offerings under one umbrella will simplify the company’s operational structure and may help the South Korean electronics giant better compete with US giant Apple Inc.
“Apple uses one OS for phones, PCs and TVs and its products show seamless integration,” Lee said. He further added, “Samsung’s IT products, however, lack such seamless integration between phones and gadgets. The merger between its consumer and mobile divisions, which have until now operated independently, may help fix this issue.”
Since Samsung has chosen the leader from the home appliances division, it might suggest that they thought that the mobile phone unit needed a lot of improvement and consolidation.
Samsung remains the world’s biggest smartphone maker with a 20.8% market share, according to the latest data from IDC. As part of the reorganization, Samsung also announced that Hark Kyu Park will be its new chief financial officer, having previously held a post in the Device Solutions team. The shares of Samsung Electronics rose after the announcement, though they are still 5% down for the year.