In Samsung’s annual New Year speech given by co-CEO and Vice-chairman Kwon Oh-hyun, Kwon has addressed the challenges the company has faced during 2016 and the new plans that they will take in order to achieve better growth for 2017.
The design flaw in Samsung’s mobile unit Galaxy Note 7 resulted in an overheated battery, which led to various degrees of explosion, costing billions for the company.
“Growth in our target markets is lagging, and political and economic uncertainties have increased due to changes in policies and exchange rates,” said Kwon during his address to the employees.
Kwon has urged every employee of the company to come together and strive for better growth and results for the new year.
In 2016, Samsung underwent a crisis with its defective Galaxy Note 7, which had various reports of an overheating and exploding unit, ending in a recall and discontinuation of the model.
The scandal has cost the company a total of $5 billion, and has affected profit of the company, having a dismal record low report during the third quarter for 2016. Meanwhile, Samsung has since then tried to move past the issue.
“After the expensive lesson learned last year, let us make all necessary reforms. First, we will maintain the basics of product competitiveness. Quality has been the cornerstone of our success that we must not compromise. We will restore top quality standards through improved processes and strengthened testing,” Kwon added.
The issue that Samsung faced has taken a toll on the company’s sales growth target during 2016. Still, Kwon expressed optimism that the company will be able to recover from the said issue.
Aside from the Note 7 issue, Samsung was also involved on the investigation of the prosecutors in South Korea regarding a corruption scandal of the South Korean President Park Geun-hye late last year. It was suspected that Samsung may have been a beneficiary or accomplice on several illegal transactions that Park has operated during her term as president of the country.
Even though it will take time before Samsung will be able to absolutely recover from its losses during 2016, the company is hoping that they could rise above the challenges they are facing as soon as possible.
“It will take the collective efforts of all employees to overcome the daunting challenges ahead of us. Let’s leverage our full set of capabilities as a company to confidently and definitively rise above these challenges.”
According to reports, Samsung plans to incorporate a voice-recognition based artificial intelligence feature on its mobile devices this 2017. The company will also venture further into the competition in 5G, Internet of Things (IoT), and autonomous vehicles.
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