South Korea’s top 30 conglomerates have shed nearly 20,000 jobs last year amid a prolonged economic slump that has led to massive restructuring across the companies, especially in Samsung companies and the country’s three struggling shipbuilding majors.
According to Korea-based corporate evaluation website CEO Score Sunday, the number of employees hired by 253 companies affiliated to Korea’s 30 largest business groups in terms of assets stood at 930,124 as of end-2016, down 2.1 percent, or 19,903, from a year ago. Among them, 15,489 were male and 4,414 were female.
Samsung Group cut the biggest number of jobs, with the number of employees on payroll at 21 affiliated companies that have disclosed financial statement amounting to 184,020 as of the end of December last year, down 6.6 percent, or 13,006, from a year earlier.
Samsung Electronics Co., Samsung Heavy Industries Co., Samsung SDI Co., Samsung Electro-Mechanics Co., Samsung Engineering Co. and Samsung C&T Corp. cut staff through an early retirement program.
In particular, Samsung Electronics Co. shaved 3,698 from its workforce, of which 2,581 were lost upon spinning off and selling its printing business to U.S.-based HP Inc. last November.
Hyundai Heavy Industries Co. cut 4,912 jobs, or 13.0 percent, as of end-2016, from 37,807 at the end of 2015, while Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. reduced 14.7 percent, or 1,938 jobs. Over the cited period, total of 8,347 jobs were cut from the nation’s three shipbuilding majors that have been going through massive restructuring.
Doosan Group also shaved 10.6 percent, or 1,991 employees, leaving 16,723 on the payroll as of end-2016. The group became leaner through a voluntary retirement program and sale of some lucrative units as part of efforts to improve financial health.
The nation’s largest steelmaker Posco and major mobile carrier KT Corp. also shed 1,456 and 1,291, respectively, last year.
By Moon Ji-woong and Kang Young-woon
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business News Korea & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]