Samsung Electronics on track for record third quarter as chips soar

Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Jay Y. Lee arrives at a court in Seoul South Korea

Samsung Electronics has announced the resignation of CEO Oh-Hyun Kwon, in charge of Samsung Display and the company's Device Solutions Business.

The line about being confronted with an unprecedented crisis seems to imply that the corruption scandal involving Samsung's former de-facto leader Lee Jae-Yong had a significant impact on Kwon's decision to resign.

Lee was arrested over allegations of inappropriate payments to South Korea's former president Park Geun-hye, via front companies connected to the disgraced politician, whose residence is now Seoul Detention Center.

The announcement happened on the same day the South Korean based electronics company forecasted for recording breaking earnings in the third quarter.

Mr Kwon said he had been thinking about his departure "for quite some time" and could "no longer put it off". 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.




Samsung Electronics Co Ltd said on Friday its third-quarter operating profit likely almost tripled from a year earlier to a new record, beating analyst estimates, as strong memory chip prices fattened margins.

"I believe the time has come for the company to start anew with new spirit and young leadership to better respond to challenges", said Kwon in a statement.

"We are fortunately making record earnings right now, but this is the fruit of past decisions and investments", he stated.

Kwon played an important role in Samsung's advancement in the semiconductor industry. He is expected to deliver his letter of resignation to Lee Jae-yong and the board of directors soon.

Growing sales of organic light-emitting diode (OLED) smartphone screens for new Apple smartphones also have supported forecasts of a new earnings record in the fourth quarter. Kwon has been associated with Samsung for 32 years, having joined way back in 1985. He later served as head of the division producing system semiconductors and then as head of the semiconductor business before becoming CEO of the company in 2012.

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