September 13, 2016 10:56
Samsung Electronics has named its vice chairman and conglomerate heir Lee Jae-yong to its board of directors as it struggles with the fallout from the Galaxy Note 7 battery debacle.
Industry watchers say the move is aimed giving Lee greater control and responsibility in management as his father, the nominal Samsung chairman Lee Kun-hee, remains in a coma.
Samsung in a board meeting on Monday decided to hold an extraordinary shareholders' meeting to appoint Lee as an executive director.
"Lee has had years of experience as CEO," the board said in a statement. "He has demonstrated his capability and integrity as a leader while accomplishing a performance turnaround and business restructuring even under a difficult management environment with chairman Lee Kun-hee hospitalized for the last two years."
The Samsung board has four inside and five outside directors. An executive director has the authority to convene shareholders' meetings, appoint CEOs and make other crucial decisions. But he must also take responsibility for any problems caused by decisions of the board.
Lee started work at Samsung in 1991 and became vice chairman in 2012. His father, who fell into coma after a stroke in 2014, did not join the board of directors until 1998, 11 years after he took the top post, and served in that position until 2008.
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