A majority of Samsung's shareholders has approved a shareholders' merger within the company. The Lee family will now gain increased control over the Korean electronics company.
(Too) much power for Lee family
The Lee family has dominated Samsung's policies for three generations, but now that Samsung Construction & Trading and Lee-owned Cheil Industries have merged, Lee Jae-yong's control over Samsung grows. He is Samsung Electronics' vice-prsident and son of Lee Kun-hee, Samsung's president who has been in hospital since May 2014 after a heart attack.
The merger was approved with a 69.5 % majority, which is just about enough to get past the two thirds majority needed. Particularly the American Elliott Associated opposed the merger as it feels the Lee family will gain too much control. On top of that, Lee Jae-yong is a newcomer and no one knows whether he has the knowledge and the capabilities to run a company like Samsung the way it should.
Within Samsung's ranks, plenty of people tried to get the merger approved: all Korean employees were given shareholder information, so that they could harass them with the merger's benefits. The merger has given Lee Jae-yong 4 % of Samsung Electronics' shares, the division that represents two thirds of the company's turnover. The entire Samsung group has about 70 companies.