Samsung C&T shareholders OK'd merger
The meger would solidify heir apparent Lee Jae-yong’s grip on the conglomerate’s crown jewel, Samsung Electronics.
But the merger, which passed with 69.5% of the shareholder votes cast after a bitter, won’t put a stop to the pressures on Mr. Lee, who now faces increased expectations from angry minority shareholders as well as a potentially long legal battle with the hedge fund.
The merger between the Samsung conglomerate’s de facto holding company, Cheil Industries, and its construction-and-trading arm Samsung C&T, will help streamline Samsung’s convoluted ownership structure, which consists of about 70 affiliates tied together by a complex web of cross-shareholdings.
Through the merger, Mr. Lee, who has a 23% share of Cheil Industries, will now have greater control over Samsung C&T’s 4.1% stake in Samsung Electronics. The heir apparent is seeking to increase his influence on Samsung Electronics ahead of an expected inheritance from his ailing father, Samsung chairman Lee Kun-hee.
The elder Mr. Lee owns a 3.4% stake in Samsung Electronics. ■