South Korea's top conglomerate, Samsung Group, which has been conducting a series of reorganizations, said Wednesday there are no scheduled affiliate shakeups "for the time being," slowing down its apparent efforts to prepare for the transfer of its management rights.
"While it is hard to tell exactly until when, there will be no (affiliate reshuffles) for the time being," said Lee Jun, Samsung's chief communications officer, when asked by reporters if there are any plans to reshuffle its affiliates this year.
Lee said that while Samsung Electronics Co. is considering absorbing Samsung Medison Co., a local medical device maker which became a Samsung affiliate in 2011, he is not aware of the details, adding he will provide more information in the future.
The remark came a day after Samsung Electronics said in its regulatory filing Tuesday that it is "considering" a merger with the health care affiliate, a development from 2012, when the tech giant said such speculation was not true when asked about the same plan by the bourse operator.
When asked about the health condition of the group's de facto head, Lee Kun-hee, who has been hospitalized since May after suffering a heart attack, the chief official only replied "(Lee is) gradually improving" as usual.
On Monday, Samsung Group's shipbuilding and engineering units announced a plan to merge within this year as the conglomerate speeds up a restructuring drive, in the latest move of its groupwide efforts to prepare for the management succession to the next generation of the owner family.
Samsung Heavy Industries Co. said in its regulatory filing that it aims to combine its shipbuilding and marine plant business with Samsung Engineering Co.'s competitive edge in procuring and managing plant-related projects.
The conglomerate has also been conducting other reshuffle efforts. In July, Samsung SDI Co., the group's battery unit, completed its merger with material division Cheil Industries Inc.
Samsung Everland Inc., which effectively serves as Samsung Group's holding company, changed its name to Cheil Industries this year after acquiring the fashion division of Cheil in September 2013. The new entity is seeking an initial public offering (IPO) in the first quarter of 2015.
Samsung SDS Co., a key IT unit of Samsung Group, filed for preliminary examination ahead of its IPO this year. (Yonhap)