Observing and dealing with chaebol groups can be a rather unique experience. Most of them are systemically arrogant and some of the family members are even worse. Samsung has become so powerful that they seem not to care or even understand how the rest of the world views them.
I recently heard an executive recall a conversation with one of the Samsung companies’ investor relations executive who is highly educated with sterling degrees from both Korea and the US universities. The foreign executive had difficulty explaining that the Korea discount still applied to Samsung given their lack of transparency and byzantine family politics. The Korean executive, who is no fool and who has lived extensive abroad, at least appeared incapable of understanding his company’s image dilemma.
I guess until circumstances knock chaebol executives over the head, they very much dwell in the “see no evil” camp when it comes to their own governance.
Below you will find two, similar articles. The first report is clearly superior given that I am quoted from a near-forgotten phone interview of a month ago.
In any event, I don’t think all of this will have a short- to medium-term impact on the Samsung group. But the long term is always difficult to forecast. This dispute could well determine who controls what a decade from now.
Billionaire Lee Fights Back Relatives Over Samsung Shares
By Jun Yang
May 30, 2012
Lee family scraps over some of Samsung riches
By Miyoung Kim
Wed, May 30, 2012