Lee Kun-hee, chairman of Samsung Electronics, dies on the age of 78

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Lee Kun-hee, chairman of Samsung Electronics, who turned the South Korean firm into a world tech titan, died on Sunday on the age of 78.

Below Lee’s management, Samsung turned the world’s largest producer of smartphones and reminiscence chips, and the corporate’s complete gross sales are actually one-fifth of South Korea’s GDP.

Samsung’s meteoric rise helped make Lee South Korea’s richest and strongest industrialist.

“It’s with nice disappointment that we announce the loss of life of Kun-hee Lee, chairman of Samsung Electronics,” the corporate stated in an announcement.

“Chairman Lee died on October 25th along with his household, together with Vice Chairman Jay Y. Lee by his facet.

“Chairman Lee was a real visionary who turned Samsung from an area firm to the world’s main innovator and industrial powerhouse,” stated the corporate, including, “His legacy will final ceaselessly.”

Samsung is by far the biggest of the family-run conglomerates or chaebols that dominate enterprise in South Korea.

They drove the nation’s transformation from war-torn damage to the 12th largest economic system on the earth, however at present they’re accused of murky political ties and the suppression of competitors – Lee himself has been convicted twice of crime, in a single case he bribed a president.

International energy
In 1987, when Lee inherited the chairmanship of the Samsung Group, which his father based as a fish and fruit exporter, it was already the biggest conglomerate within the nation, with actions starting from shopper electronics to development.

However it was seen as a awful producer of low-cost, low high quality merchandise.

“Let’s change every little thing however our wives and kids,” Lee stated in 1993.

The corporate collected all 150,000 cell telephones in inventory and burned them to pave the way in which for the rebirth of the vastly profitable “Anycall” mobile phone.

With Lee on the helm, Samsung turned a world big: when he suffered a coronary heart assault in 2014, Samsung was the world’s largest producer of smartphones and reminiscence chips and a serious provider of semiconductors and LCDs.

Lee hardly ever spoke to the media, however was watched carefully when he broke his lengthy silence, usually with fateful New Yr’s firm addresses.

His son, Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong, has been working the corporate because the 2014 coronary heart assault.

“Hermit King”
Regardless of his immense wealth and energy, Lee hardly ever ventured out of the excessive partitions of his non-public compound in central Seoul to go to company headquarters and was nicknamed “Hermit King.”

Lee, the third son of Samsung group founder Lee Byung-chull, had a gentle spot for canine – developed as a baby in Japan, the place he went to highschool from the age of 11. He was additionally identified for his love of flicks, horse driving and unique supercars.

He studied on the famend Waseda College in Japan and earned an MBA from George Washington College within the USA.

On the age of 36 he turned vice chairman of the group’s development and business department and 9 years later, shortly after his father’s loss of life, chairman of the group.

Lee married Hong Ra-hee – whose father was Legal professional Common – with whom he had a son and three daughters.

Bribery, embezzlement, tax evasion
The worlds of politics and enterprise are intertwined in South Korea, and the connection was mirrored in Lee’s profession.

In 1996 he was convicted of bribing former President Roh Tae-woo to do Samsung a favor in enterprise choices.

Lee was discovered responsible of embezzlement and tax evasion in a 2008 slush fund scandal through which he briefly retired from company administration.

However suspended sentences meant he was by no means in jail and obtained two presidential pardons to gas his nation’s profitable efforts to safe the 2018 Winter Olympics.

Years later, he fought off lawsuits from his older brother and sister claiming they have been entitled to billions of {dollars} price of Samsung inventory.

He had been below medical care after his coronary heart assault, however few particulars about his situation have been revealed, leaving him in thriller even in his closing days.



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