Samsung to spend $360b on chips, biotech over 5 years

Samsung to spend $360b on chips, biotech over 5 years

Bloomberg: The Samsung group plans to raise spending by more than 30% to 450 trillion won (about $360 billion) over the half-decade to 2026 to shore up businesses from chips to drugs, as South Korea’s conglomerates grapple with growing economic and supply shocks.

The corporate giant — whose units from Samsung Electronics Co to Samsung Biologics Co dominate Korea’s economy — promised in a statement to create 80,000 jobs through 2026, mostly in semiconductors and biopharmaceuticals.

Samsung, run by the scion of one of Korea’s oldest and wealthiest families, is one of a handful of so-called chaebol that are outlining investment plans as the country’s new president takes office. President Yoon Suk Yeol, who began his five-year term, has been a vocal supporter of the conglomerates and made them a key pillar in his economic growth plans.

Also on Tuesday, Hyundai Motor Group, South Korea’s largest automaker, announced plans to spend 63 trillion won by 2025 in areas including electric cars, robotics, aviation technology and hydrogen-powered vehicles. Retail and chemical giant Lotte Group said it will pour about 37 trillion won into boosting the nation’s economy, from hotels and duty-free stores to hydrogen power generation and an EV rental businesses.

“It’s a classic way of Korean companies to appeal to a new president,” said Park Ju-gun, head of Leaders Index, a Seoul-based research institute. “Investors need to check whether the promised amount of investments are actually executed or not.”

Along with the heads of other prominent chaebol, Samsung is expected to shoulder part of the responsibility for driving growth in a country dealing with rising inflation and supply chain disruptions due to the pandemic and war in Ukraine.

The conglomerate is focusing particular attention on its technology flagship, the crown jewel of a sprawling empire that spans shipbuilding, technology, healthcare and finance. Samsung Electronics, the world’s largest maker of smartphones, displays, memory chips and consumer appliances, unveiled plans last year to invest $151 billion through 2030 to delve deeper into advanced chipmaking.