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Samsung heir urges employees to keep Samsung going

Samsung heir Lee Jae-yong (Yonhap)
Samsung heir Lee Jae-yong (Yonhap)
Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong, in another message from prison, asked the company’s executives and employees to carry on with planned investments.

Samsung’s three CEOs -- Kim Ki-nam, Koh Dong-jin and Kim Hyun-suk -- wrote on the company’s intranet, Samsung Knox, on behalf of Lee, conveying the heir’s message to the employees.

“To my Samsung family, I regret that I have caused worries because of my shortcomings,” Lee said. “Samsung faced many difficulties over the past few years, but all of you have kept Samsung with your diligence.

“Regardless of my situation, Samsung has to continue its journey,” he said. “Samsung should keep its promise to make investments, create jobs and fulfill its social responsibilities.”

Lee’s message was released on the day that the external compliance monitoring committee on Samsung, led by former Justice Kim Ji-hyung, held the first meeting with the CEOs of seven Samsung affiliates since Lee was jailed last Monday.

“The Samsung CEOs discussed measures to enhance compliance at each affiliate during the meeting,” said an official at the monitoring committee.

The committee was formed last year at the orders of Seoul High Court Judge Jung Joon-young, who called on Samsung to take effective measures to strengthen its compliance rules.

The judge, at the time, hinted that the activities of the compliance committee could be considered when the court decided on Lee’s sentence. 

Samsung CEOs pose after a meeting with the compliance committee on Tuesday. (Yonhap)
Samsung CEOs pose after a meeting with the compliance committee on Tuesday. (Yonhap)
But the court judged that the committee’s activities weren’t as effective as it had expected when it handed Lee a 2 1/2-year jail term.

Last week, the jailed Lee sent a message through his lawyer saying the compliance committee should continue its activities.

By Song Su-hyun (