Samsung Electronics will consider splitting its business into two separate units, one a holding company and the other an operational one, according to a report Monday in Seoul Economic Daily, which cited an unnamed source.
A proposal for the split was made Oct. 5 by activist shareholder U.S.-based Elliott Management to boost shareholder value.
The Samsung Group has a complicated corporate structure. Samsung Electronics is the main division of the Samsung Group, which owns several other businesses, and is itself held by another company, Samsung C&T. In the proposal it made public, Elliott — which along with other entities it controls owns about 0.62 percent of Samsung Electronics — suggested its proposed holding company merge with the Samsung C&T.
Such a move is expected to create more transparency in the company’s organizational structure, making it easier to value, while also giving the founding Lee family greater controlling interest.
Elliott also wants Samsung to commit to $26 billion in a special dividend payout and a promise to return at least 75 percent of free cash flow to investors.
The company’s board of directors will meet Tuesday to discuss Elliott’s proposal, according to the South Korean newspaper cited by Reuters. The newspaper report added that the country’s stock exchange had also separately asked Samsung if it was planning a spinoff.
Shares of Samsung Electronics closed 1.64 percent higher on the Korea Exchange Monday.