Samsung taps Lee daughter
The second daughter of Samsung chairman Lee Kun-hee has been made a president at the firm’s de facto holding company, cementing his family’s hold on the South Korean giant. Lee Seo-hyun will lead management planning at the Everland’s fashion business, Samsung said in a statement yesterday. The 40-year-old was previously vice president of Cheil Industries, which was the former fashion unit before it handed over operations to Everland. Her older sister — Lee Boo-jin — has been a president at Everland since 2010, overseeing business strategy, while their only brother, Lee Jae-yong, was made vice chairman of Samsung Electronics last year. Lee Kun-hee is chairman of the group’s flagship unit Samsung Electronics and de facto leader of the entire business empire.
Inflation within target
South Korea’s inflation rose slightly last month, but stayed well below the central bank’s inflation target, state data showed yesterday. The consumer price index rose 0.9 percent year-on-year last month, up from a 0.7 percent gain in October, Statistics Korea said. The latest reading — well below the Bank of Korea’s target range of 2.5 to 3.5 percent — also marked the third straight month that the country’s inflation remained below 1 percent. Core inflation — which excludes volatile oil and food prices — rose 1.8 percent from a year ago, up from October’s 1.6 percent gain.
Malaysia okays power hike
Malaysia will allow national power distributor Tenaga Nasional Bhd to raise electricity charges for the first time in more than two years, adding to business and living costs as the government cuts state subsidies. Tenaga will increase prices by an average of about 15 percent in Peninsular Malaysia to 38.53 sen (US$0.12) per kilowatt hour from Jan. 1, Malaysian Minister of Energy, Green Technology and Water Maximus Johnity Ongkili told reports in Kuala Lumpur yesterday. Tariffs will rise by an average 16.9 percent to 34.52 sen/kWh in the eastern state of Sabah, he said.
Thalidomide suit settled
A class action suit by Australian and New Zealand victims of Thalidomide against the anti-morning sickness drug’s British distributor Diageo Scotland Ltd has been settled for A$89 million (US$81 million), a lawyer said yesterday. The victims’ lawyer, Peter Gordon, told the Victoria state Supreme Court that the settlement, which is subject to court approval, brought to an end a long battle for compensation. A suit against the drug’s German manufacturer, Grunenthal Group, will be discontinued. More than 100 Thalidomide victims in Australia and New Zealand will receive compensation once the settlement has been ratified by the court in February, Gordon said.
Cantor ventures into China
Cantor Gaming is the latest Las Vegas-based gambling company to move into the Chinese market. The sports betting and mobile gambling company announced this week that it would help operate a lottery club in Tianjin, along with partners Global Entertainment Investment & Management Co and the Tianjin Welfare Lottery club. Cantor will provide infrastructure and technological know-how, and will allow the club to offer wireless wagering, as opposed to paper-based betting. Cantor is advertising the new 7,400m2 club as a stylish place with mahjong parlors, private dining rooms and lounges, as well as lottery games.