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Samsung boss heads to Europe with a billion-dollar shopping list

Last update: January 27, 2022 at 11:45 UTC+01:00

Samsung Electronics Vice President Lee Jae-yong is a central figure in the organization. Its business activities are being watched closely by the market for signs of where Samsung might be headed.

There are now reports in Korean media that during the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday, Lee Jae-yong is expected to travel to Europe for business purposes. It is believed that he may be looking for possible merger and acquisition opportunities.

All eyes are on the Samsung boss as he heads to Europe

Samsung is sitting on more than $110 billion in cash and hasn’t made a major acquisition since 2016. The company has said in the past that it’s ready to acquire more companies to drive growth.

The vice president is expected to focus on improving cooperation with Samsung’s partners in the semiconductor industry. Samsung Electronics has a stated goal of becoming the world leader in semiconductors by 2030.

Lee last visited Europe in October 2020 when he visited ASML’s headquarters in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, and met with key company executives. ASML is the only company to provide the EUV machines needed to manufacture advanced semiconductors.

Reports at the time suggested that Lee’s visit helped Samsung secure reservations for more EUV machines. The last trip could also involve a trip to ASML for a similar purpose.

The market will also be watching closely for any activity that might suggest Samsung is pursuing a merger or acquisition. Han Jong-hee, a senior Samsung executive, hinted earlier this month that there will be “good M&A results soon.”

Reports to suggest Samsung may seek to acquire semiconductor companies. The Dutch company NXP, the German Infineon Technologies and the Swiss STMicroelectronics would be potential candidates. ARM may also excite Samsung now that its $40 billion deal with NVIDIA appears to have exploded.

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