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SEOUL, Dec. 6 (Yonhap) -- Samsung Electronics Co. said Thursday it has decided to promote Kim Ki-nam, who currently serves as the president and CEO of the crucial device solution division, to vice chairman, as the chip business continued to post record-breaking performances throughout 2018.
The South Korean tech giant said the decision was based on Kim's leadership and the major contributions he made to the company's chip business. Kim will continue to lead the Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology as well.
The chip business of the device solutions division saw its operating profit reach 13.65 trillion won (US$12.2 billion) in the July-September period, up 37 percent from the 9.96 trillion won posted in the same period last year, setting a new record.
Samsung retained its leaders in its smartphone and consumer electronics divisions.
Vice President Roh Tae-moon, who heads the research and development of the mobile communications business, was promoted to president.
Samsung said Roh was one of major contributors to the popularity of Galaxy smartphones around the globe, claiming that he will continue to move the company's mobile business to another higher level.
Industry watchers said the latest announcement reflects Samsung's strategy of seeking stability over changes amid economic uncertainties.
Following Kim's promotion, Samsung Electronics has two chairmen and four vice chairmen.
Samsung Electronics Chairman Lee Kun-hee, who has been hospitalized since 2014, is the symbolic leader of the tech giant. His only son, Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong, is currently de facto chief.
The company also has Chairman Kwon Oh-hyun, along with Yoon Boo-keun and Shin Jong-kyun, holding vice chairman titles.
Samsung also promoted a total of 158 executives to vice president level or below.
Of this number, 13 staff members were made vice presidents and will become potential CEOs of the company's business divisions.
A whopping 80 executives were from the chip division, reflecting that sector's robust performance.
The company said it also sought to give equal opportunities to all staff regardless of gender or nationality, but the figure for such individuals remained relatively low. The company promoted eight women and three non-South Koreans.
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