Samsung Electronics Case Study

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Samsung Electronics in 2005

“I’m the chaos-maker.”

– Yun Jong Yong, President and CEO, Samsung Electronics

In 2004, Samsung Electronics (Samsung) was the world’s largest memory chip maker and Asia’s

biggest electronics manufacturer. Under the leadership of Yun Jong Yong (Yun) who had been with

Samsung Group1, South Korea’s biggest Chaebol2 (Conglomerate), since 1966, Samsung had

established its brands in the hyper competitive electronics industry worldwide. Almost every week,

Samsung had announced new products which were the ‘world’s first’ or ‘world’s biggest’. Samsung

had registered 1,600 patents in the US in 20043.

In the last few years, Samsung had undergone a drastic transformation. A decade ago, this

Korean company was considered a manufacturer of low-end consumer electronic products. But by

2004, it had gained recognition for its diversified product range (Exhibit I), product style, design,

features and latest technology. Yun’s continuous efforts had enabled Samsung to compete with

brands like Sony, Intel, Nokia and other world-renowned electronics and cell phone market leaders.

“The Korean giant makes some of the coolest gadgets on earth. Now it’s reinventing itself to get

even cooler.”4


Samsung Group was founded by Byung-Chull Lee on March 1 st 1938. It was started as an export company in Korea.


Samsung Group is one of the most powerful family-run companies; such companies are called chaebol in Korea.


Lewis Peter, “Samsung’s Secret - The Perpetual Crisis Machine”, Fortune, Vol. 152, No. 4


Rocks David and Ihlwan Moon, “Samsung Design,”, November 29 th 2004

This case study was written by Seema Agrawal under the direction of Dr. A.V Vedpuriswar, IBSCDC. It is intended to be used as the

basis for class discussion rather than to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. The case was

compiled from published sources.

© 2006,...