Women Make up Just 4% of Korean CEOs

      November 24, 2023 12:57

      A recent survey of Korea's top 100 companies reveals that women make up only six percent of executives and a mere four percent of CEOs.
      Headhunting firm Unico Search analyzed their semi-annual reports for this year and found that there were 439 females, constituting 6 percent out of the total 7,345 executives.
      While the proportion of female executives in the top 100 companies has gradually increased from 3.5 percent in 2019 to six percent this year, it remains minimal.
      There are only four female CEOs among them -- Lee Boo-jin of Hotel Shilla, Lee Jung-ae of LG Household & Health Care, Choi Soo-yeon of Naver, and Choi Yeon-hye of Korea Gas Corporation.
      In contrast, the percentage of female CEOs among the Fortune 500 worldwide stands at 10.4 percent.
      Among Korea's top 100, 72 have female executives, the same as last year. Samsung has 6.2 percent or 72, Hyundai 4.4 percent or 21, and LG 4.1 percent or 12.
      Samsung promised to expand the proportion to over 10 percent within a decade in 2011 but has fallen far short of the target.
      Amore Pacific has the highest proportion with 25 percent, followed by CJ CheilJedang (23.6 percent), Naver (19.8 percent), Lotte Shopping (16.5 percent), LG Uplus (15.1 percent), and KT (10 percent), all surpassing the 10-percent mark.
      Some 39.2 percent or 172 female executives are concentrated in the IT sector, while traditional manufacturing industries such as shipbuilding, steel, and machinery have none.
      Unico Search predicts that due to the low proportion of female staff in those sectors, the number of female executives is unlikely to rise.
      Globally, female executives account for 35.3 percent at Meta (formerly Facebook), at Apple 23 percent, at Intel 20.7 percent, and even at TSMC 10 percent.
      In U.K magazine the Economist's glass-ceiling index released in March, Korea was rated lowest among the 29 surveyed countries.
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