Samsung Electronics Co chairman Lee Kun-hee urged employees to develop new businesses that can help the world’s largest maker of mobile phones and TVs fend off a slow global economy and increased competition.
“There’s ongoing competition between global companies across all areas from products, technology development and hiring talented people to patent disputes,” Lee said, according to a summary of a speech he gave to employees yesterday.
“The market is big and opportunities are wide open, so we should find new businesses that Samsung’s future will hinge on,” he said.
Samsung Group, which runs 82 affiliate companies and generates about 20 percent of South Korea’s GDP, should boost investment and create new jobs, Lee said, according to the summary distributed by the group via e-mail.
The group’s flagship electronics unit, Suwon-based Samsung Electronics Co, is the world’s biggest seller of mobile phones, televisions, memory chips and flat-panel displays.
The company posted a record 165 trillion won (US$155 billion) in revenue in 2011. The company will next week release its fourth-quarter earnings estimates for last year.
In related news, Samsung Electronics lost a bid to keep sales data of some of its products sealed in a US patent dispute with Apple Inc.
US District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, California, on Tuesday denied Samsung’s request to keep the sales figures secret while the company appeals an earlier sealing order.
Apple won a US$1.05 billion award on Aug. 24 last year after a jury found Samsung infringed six Apple patents on technology used in Samsung phones and devices.
Apple is awaiting a decision from Koh on its request for additional damages against Samsung for infringement after the iPhone maker lost its bid to block US sales on 26 of the Galaxy maker’s devices.
Koh ruled on Dec. 10 that Samsung must file an exhibit which lists the total number of units of certain Samsung products sold during certain time periods.
“Samsung’s appeal involves pricing information and profit margins,” Koh said.
The exhibit at issue “only lists the number of units sold in each of several recent months,” she said.
In a separate order on Tuesday, Koh granted Samsung’s request to delay the publication of part of a document showing per-unit operating profit for two Samsung phones, pending an appeal.
The judge denied most other requests to seal documents from both Apple and Samsung, saying there was a lack of a “compelling reason” that would require their sealing.