2016 could only see low growth for the world’s largest smartphone maker, Samsung CEO admits
Samsung has said it expects 2016 to be a difficult year as it looks to cement its place as one of the world’s leading electronics companies.
In a New Year’s address to employees revealed today by Reuters, Samsung chief executive Kwon Oh-hyun said to expect low rates of growth worldwide as financial uncertainty continues in many markets around the globe.
This, coupled with “a difficult business environment” created by greater competition in the firm’s main businesses, could lead to 2016 being an arduous year for the company, Kwon said.
“Low global growth will persist this year with greater uncertainty stemming from issues such as financial risks for emerging countries,” Kwon (pictured left) warned, although neither he or Samsung would provide detailed financial forecasts.
The company is set to release its financial results for the fourth quarter of 2016 on Friday, and will be hoping for the continuation of the improvement seen in its last results back in October. During that quarter, strong demand for its components offset fears about its smartphone business, leading the company to record a growth in operating profit for the first time in two years.
This success had followed months of speculation surrounding Samsung’s prospects, as the company was reportedly planning to cut as much as 10 percent of staff at its South Korean headquarters, and would also be cutting back on general expenses by 50 percent next year in a pre-emptive move because of the ongoing slump in the smartphone market.
Today’s statement is the latest in a series of potentially interesting moves from Samsung as it looks to ensure future successes in both old and new product areas.
Last month, the company confirmed it is forming a team that will focus on automotive-related businesses amid reports it wants to build a smart car.
The as-yet-unnamed automotive team will be separate of existing divisions at the company, and will be tasked with growing the sales of car components, particularly in-car entertainment, satellite navigation and autonomous driving technologies.
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