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Samsung Electronics yesterday appointed Yoon Boo-keun, president of its consumer electronics division, and J.K. Shin, president of its IT and Mobile Communications division, as co-chief executives at its annual general shareholders meeting.

“The new appointments recognize the strong performance of Yoon and Shin,” said Samsung in a statement.

“Under Yoon, Samsung’s TV business maintained and solidified its global leadership position after becoming global No. 1 in 2006,” it said. “Under Shin, Samsung’s mobile business posted significant growth and attained the global No. 1 position in smartphones in 2011 and in overall mobile phones in 2012.”

Vice Chairman Oh-Hyun Kwon, who oversees Samsung’s components business, will retain his position as CEO and chairman of the Board of Directors.

Samsung has different CEOs for different parts of the empire.

“The new leadership structure will serve to clarify and enhance independent management of the two set divisions, as well as the independent management of the set and component businesses,” Samsung added.

Samsung said in a regulatory filing Feb. 15 that the appointments would be discussed at its shareholders’ meeting.

There were predictions Chairman Lee Kun-hee’s only son and Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Jay Y. Lee would assume a “registered board member” post this year, but yesterday’s meeting did not discuss the matter. That postpones the decision by a year.

If he is given the position of registered board member, the junior Lee would have more legal responsibility for management and it would signal that the heir apparent is inching closer to inheriting the nation’s top business empire.

Lee Boo-jin, Chairman Lee’s first daughter and CEO of Samsung affiliate Hotel Shilla, is a registered board member of her company.

Separately, the shareholders’ meeting also decided to establish a corporate social responsibility committee under the board of directors amid growing demands for conglomerates to contribute more to society.


By Seo Ji-eun [spring@joongang.co.kr]

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