For reasons that aren't entirely clear, five high-ranking executives at Samsung have left or have given notice to leave in the past few months. According to sources speaking with CNET, the mini exodus has occurred in Samsung's U.S. mobile business (Samsung Telecommunications America), with the head of national sales, mobile devices chief and key strategist for tablet and wearables all having left. CNET's report suggests it may have been the amount of work Samsung expected from these individuals; U.S. executives are often required to work U.S. and Korean hours, and also travel frequently between the two countries, CNET noted.
The departures come ahead of Samsung's biggest handset release of the year, with the S5 set to launch in the U.S. on April 11, along with the Korean company's Gear 2, Gear 2 Neo and Gear Fit. The Korean company is currently embroiled in a litigation battle with Apple, so the timing of the changes isn't particularly good. A statement was provided to CNET by Samsung in the wake of the departures, with the company saying it's more committed than ever to building an "industry leading organization."
Other notable departures from STA include its senior vice president of product and technology, vice president and general manager, and vice president of retail and channel marketing; Donna Cerny, who was director of human resources, has apparently joined up with Apple, according to her LinkedIn. None of the executives have indicated why they decided to depart, but Samsung said each former employee did so on their own volition.
The top-level shakeup may not have any sort of substantial impact on Samsung's immediate bottom line, but given what's currently going on, and the big releases on the horizon, it could foreshadow things to come. At the very least, it makes you wonder why so many executives would decide to leave one of the larger tech companies at the height of its powers. Employees decide to leave companies for other opportunities all the time, but we have a feeling there's more to it than that.