Samsung ramps up R&D hiring despite COVID-19 setback

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Samsung is facing a massive setback due to the COVID-19 crisis. The company’s smartphone and TV sales dropped significantly during the first quarter of 2020, and they’re about to drop even further in Q2 and Q3 of this year. However, Samsung is not cutting R&D spending. In fact, it is looking to hire even more employees for research and development purposes.The South Korean electronics giant has reached the highest number of executives and staff members since its foundation. Its Q1 2020 business report reveals that the tech giant currently has 106,877 executives and staff members, which is 1,620 more than last year. Its Device Solutions division has 56,045 employees, which is 1,465 more employees than Q1 2019.It appears that Samsung is still pursuing its ‘Super Gap’ strategy for its important business areas to maintain a strong upper hand over its rivals. At the time when other companies are furloughing or laying off employees and freezing the hiring process due to the COVID-19 situation, Samsung is conducting the process to recruit more talent.Since March 19, the company has posted 51 job openings across ten teams in the Device Solutions division alone. Samsung spent KRW 5.36 trillion (around $4.35 billion) during Q1 2020, which is 6.4 percent higher than Q1 2019. Looking at this trend, the company will likely exceed last year’s R&D spending of KRW 20.1 trillion (around $16.2 billion).Seo Byung-hoon, Samsung Electronics’ in charge of investor relations, said, “We will continue to do our best to ensure continuous growth in the future by further improving the competitiveness of our key business areas and making strategic investments in R&D despite the challenges presented by COVID-19,” during a conference call with investors last month.

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