Samsung Forms New Division to Seek Out Future Growth Engines

Samsung Electronics announced the formation of a new division tasked with identifying and developing future business opportunities as the tech giant looks to offset declines in its core operations.

The new Future Business Planning Division will be led by semiconductor and battery industry veteran Jun Young-hyun, who previously oversaw Samsung’s memory chip unit, one of its main profit drivers today, and most recently led efforts to expand Samsung SDI’s battery business.

The mandate of the new division is to scout out and nurture new growth pillars for Samsung as rising competition from Chinese companies threatens the company’s leadership in areas like smartphones, home appliances, and display panels. China is also aggressively developing its domestic semiconductor industry, an area Samsung currently dominates. Few details were provided on the scope or staffing of the Future Business Planning Division, though Samsung said it would launch operations soon.

In a similar move a decade ago, Samsung tasked a specialized unit with identifying new opportunities which led to the spinoff and rapid growth of Samsung Biologics and Samsung SDI. Current chairman Lee Jae-yong hopes Young-hyun can orchestrate comparable results as Samsung looks to reduce reliance on today’s cash cows.

Samsung’s annual executive reshuffle left its existing dual CEO arrangement unchanged, with Han Jong-hee continuing to head the mobile and consumer electronics units while Kyung Kye-hyun retains leadership of the vital semiconductor business.