Samsung's Chairman Lee Kun-hee has died at 78

Samsung has announced the death of its Chairman Lee Kun-hee after being comatose for almost 6 years. This was due to his heart attack back in 2014. 

"Chairman Lee passed away on October 25 with his family, including Vice Chairman Jay Y. Lee, by his side. He was a true visionary who transformed Samsung into the world-leading innovator and industrial powerhouse from a local business. His legacy will be everlasting," the company said in a statement.

About Lee Kun-hee

The Forbes's richest man in South Korea is the third son of Lee Byung-Chul, the founder of Samsung. He joined the company in 1968 then became chairman in 1987 when his father died. Through his efforts, Samsung has turned from a compony of low-quality and cheap products to one of the biggest names in the smartphone industry and a well-known brand not just in South Korea but also in other countries worldwide.

In 2008, he stepped down from his Chairmanship due to charges of embezzlement and tax evasion. He was then imprisoned but was given a Presidential pardon in 2009. He then regained the position in 2010 until his heart attack in 2014.

Role during the 2018 Olympic bid

It was the third time for South Koreans to enter the bidding for hosting an Olympic and Paralympic event. After the said pardon, Lee Kun-hee was one of the key personnel on the bidding. Lee-Myung-bak, the South Korean President during that time, was hoping for Samsung's Chairman to use his connections and financial assistance to boost the chances of winning the Olympic bid.

The hopes of the former President hasn't put on a waste. With a majority of 63 votes, South Korea finally won the bid for the 2018 Winter Olympics and Paralympics.

Successor to Chairmanship

Ever since being bed-ridden in 2014, his son and Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong assumed the role of his father in the company. Although he had been guilty of bribery and other crimes relating to former South Korean President Park Geun-hye in 2017, it has been expected that he will assume succession to Chairmanship in the latter.