Lee Kun-hee, the lengthy-time chairman of Samsung Team who remodeled the conglomerate into just one of the world’s greatest business empires, died nowadays at the age of 78, in accordance to stories from South Korean primary information agency Yonhap.
The story of Samsung is deeply intertwined with the record of its residence region, which is occasionally dubbed “The Republic of Samsung.” Lee, the son of Samsung founder Lee Byung-chul, came to electrical power in the late 1980s just as South Korea transitioned from dictatorship to democracy with the political handover from military strongman Chun Doo-hwan to Roh Tae-woo. Beneath his management, Samsung spearheaded initiatives across a variety of parts in electronics, which includes semiconductors, memory chips, shows, and other components that are the backbone of today’s digital devices.
Lee navigated the demanding economic problems of the 1990s, which include the 1998 Asian economical crisis, which observed a in close proximity to collapse of the economies of South Korea and many other so-referred to as Asian Tigers, as properly as the Dot-Com bubble, which observed the collapse of web stocks globally.
Coming out of those hard decades, Lee invested in and is probably most famed currently for constructing up the conglomerate’s Galaxy client smartphone line, which progressed Samsung from an industrial powerhouse to a throughout the world shopper brand name. Samsung Electronics, which is just a single of a spider world wide web of Samsung companies, is these days well worth close to $350 billion, producing it between the most precious businesses in the environment.
Though his organization acumen and strategic insights handling Samsung were lauded, he confronted troubles in current several years. He was convicted of tax evasion in the late 2000s, but was ultimately pardoned by the country’s then president Lee Myung-bak (no relation).
Samsung has also been less than hearth from groups including Elliott Administration over chairman Lee’s attempts to safe the money foreseeable future of Samsung for his son, Lee Jae-yong, who took above efficient leadership of the conglomerate subsequent the elder Lee’s coronary heart attack in 2014. Lee Jae-yong has experienced his own run-ins with the regulation, getting been located guilty of bribery and sentenced to 5 years in jail, which was eventually suspended by a judge.
Soon after his coronary heart attack, Lee Kun-hee remained hospitalized in secure condition according to Yonhap. Rumors of his condition have percolated in the six decades considering the fact that.
In accordance to Bloomberg, Lee leaves at the rear of approximately $20 billion in wealth, and he is the wealthiest South Korean citizen. He is survived by his wife as well as four small children.