Feeds

Samsung Electronics chair Lee Kun-hee hospitalised

Dynastic intrigues follow heart attack for leader of Samsung's biggest division

Security for virtualized datacentres

Lee Kun-hee, the chair of Samsung Electronics, has reportedly been hospitalised and is receiving “emergency treatment” for a heart ailment.

South Korean news service Yonhap has published rolling reports suggesting Lee, 72, experienced shortness of breath on Saturday evening, was subsequently hospitalised and required cardiopulmonary resuscitation. By Sunday he underwent surgery to treat a heart attack.

Yonhap's most recent report, at the time of writing, says Lee survived the surgery.

Lee's illness probably won't impact day to day operations across the sprawling Samsung group, which he led from relative obscurity to global prominence during a 21-year stint as chairman from 1987 to 2008. That stint ended after a domestic political bribery scandal, but Lee returned two years later to assume the Chairman's role at Samsung Electronics. As that entity is the group's largest, it gave him significant influence throughout Samsung.

Lee's health hasn't been good for a decade: Yonhap says he had lung surgery in the 90s and his respiratory system hasn't been in top condition since.

At 72 it's therefore expected he'll retire, which has led to some dynastic machinations – and speculation – within Samsung about his successor. Lee's son, Lee Jay-yong, is expected to take the crown at Samsung electronics.

Lee Kun-hee's illness is probably an unwelcome distraction for the Samsung Electronics, which recently posted tepid results and parted ways with its head of mobile device design after a disappointing reception for the Galaxy S5.

The company remains a powerhouse: the $US50bn it hauled through the doors in Q1 makes it the world's biggest IT concern by revenue. But with the mobile devices market it relies on showing signs of slowdown, now's a time strong and experienced leadership will be appreciated.

Which may sound a callous way to appraise a situation when a wealth-creating titan lies ill. Markets, doubtless, will be rather blunter in their assessment if they feel Lee's illness will negatively impact Samsung's fortunes. ®

Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Why Oracle CEO Larry Ellison had to go ... Except he hasn't
Silicon Valley's veteran seadog in piratical Putin impression
Big Content Australia just blew a big hole in its credibility
AHEDA's research on average content prices did not expose methodology, so appears less than rigourous
Bono: Apple will sort out monetising music where the labels failed
Remastered so hard it would be difficult or impossible to master it again
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.