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Samsung to hold global strategy meeting amid business uncertainties

Upcoming biannual meeting to be first of its kind after Lee Jae-yong’s promotion to chairman

By Jie Ye-eun

Published : Dec. 12, 2022 - 15:17

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Samsung Electronics' headquarters in Gangnam, southern Seoul (Yonhap) Samsung Electronics' headquarters in Gangnam, southern Seoul (Yonhap)

Samsung Electronics, which completed its annual executive reshuffle Friday, will embark on a global strategy meeting starting this week to establish business strategies for next year amid persistent uncertainties over the macroeconomic environment.

Samsung’s global strategy meeting, which is held biannually in June and December, is a venue where executives at local and global units gather to review business conditions of each sector and discuss new growth engine plans for the upcoming year.

The upcoming meeting will also be the first one after Samsung Group’s de facto leader Lee Jae-yong took office as executive chairman of Samsung Electronics on Oct. 27. However, the chief will not attend the meeting as usual, according to Samsung officials.

The tech giant’s Device eXperience (DX) division, which oversees its smartphone and home appliance businesses, will organize the meetings on Thursday and Friday, while the Device Solutions (DS) division in charge of the company’s chip business will hold the meetings around Dec. 22.

Samsung's co-CEOs -- Han Jong-hee, head of the DX division and Kyung Kye-hyun, head of the DS division, will preside over each division's meeting. The biannual meeting used to take place in person, but this year it will be held in a hybrid format amid the prolonged coronavirus pandemic.

Samsung executives are expected to discuss ways to confront and manage a series of challenges posed by global inflation, consumers’ pent-up demand, rapidly rising interest rates, geopolitical tensions and the ongoing pandemic.

On the DX front, sluggish demand for smartphones and home appliances will likely be one of the key concerns. The division will further seek ways to strengthen its grip on the premium markets globally, while trying to cut production costs.

The chip manufacturing unit will put issues including the company’s long-term plans to raise its system chip competitiveness on the table. It will also check the construction of its foundry semiconductor chip manufacturing plant in Texas, which the chipmaker plans to finish by 2024.

The outlook is gloomy for Samsung in the fourth quarter on the back of the sluggish semiconductor sector. In the third quarter, the world's largest memory chip and mobile phone maker suffered an earnings shock as its main semiconductor business faced major headwinds from weakening memory chip prices and demand.

Samsung’s regulatory filings showed its operating profit and net profit for the July-September period tumbled 31.4 percent on-year and 23.6 percent on-year, respectively.

The firm posted roughly 57.3 trillion won ($4.38 billion) in inventory assets as of the third quarter, up 38.5 percent compared to the same period in the previous year. It also saw a surge in its semiconductor inventory by nearly 10 trillion won to 26.4 trillion won in the cited period, the filings showed.