New Homeplus leader will aim for ‘happy growth’

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New Homeplus leader will aim for ‘happy growth’

Do Sung-hwan has been named CEO of Homeplus, replacing Chairman Lee Seung-han, who has led the nation’s second-largest retailer since its founding 14 years ago.

Through this generational shift, Homeplus plans to focus on “happy growth” corresponding to its 4-H goals of happiness, harmony, humanism and hope. Do first joined Samsung C&T Corporation in 1981 and entered the distribution sector in 1995. He has served as manager of Homeplus’ first store in Daegu and as the executive in charge of finance, store operations, logistics and marketing.

His biggest success was perhaps at the helm of Homeplus Tesco, previously Home Ever, which acquired Tesco in 2008. Under his leadership, the company turned a deficit of more than 200 billion won ($179 million) into a profit just a year after the acquisition.

In addition, since August 2011, Do has been responsible for managing Tesco Malaysia as the first Korean CEO dispatched to Tesco’s foreign affiliate. There, he further developed his reputation and became a likely candidate to become the local discount chain’s next CEO.

At a ceremony celebrating his appointment, Do said he will focus on establishing a foothold to achieve “happy growth” together with employees, customers, business partners and community members.

“While continuing to contribute to Korea’s economy and the development of the domestic retail industry through innovation in management, I will make happy growth through which customers, employees, partners and communities all grow together,” Do said in his speech.

The chairman will step down from the front line of the business and plans to focus on social contributions, human resources development and strategic planning activities.

While resigning as CEO, Lee will maintain the chairmanship position.

He will also serve as an adviser to Tesco Group, chairman and professor emeritus of Tesco Academy, and the chairman of the eParan Foundation, the company’s corporate social responsibility program.

In addition, from next month, he plans to participate in a roundtable studying Homeplus’ success with professors at Boston University for 100 days in the United States. He was invited by the university to participate in the program.

“Looking back on our journey together, there remain three regrets, and the first is that we could not accomplish the goal of becoming the nation’s No. 1 discount store chain due to changes in the market environment and business regulations imposed by the government on large retailers,” Lee said in his farewell speech.


By Kim Jung-yoon [kjy@joongang.co.kr]

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