The Hyundai Motor Group is preparing for the eventual shift of power at its top post by promoting three people to executive vice president positions. Despite no indications that chairman Chung Mong-koo is stepping down from his post, analysts see the promotion as a way to help smooth a leadership succession -- especially since one of those promoted, Cho Won-hong, was handpicked by heir apparent Chung Eui-sun, as sources privy with the matter told Reuters.
Hyundai promoted Cho, currently its chief marketing officer, as well as domestic public relations chief Kong Young-woon, as executive vice presidents. Kia, meanwhile, named Kim Gyun as executive vice president.
Chung Sun-sup, head of local research firm Chaebul.com, remarked that the focus on the management reshuffle at the carmakers should be on executive vice presidents, as they are the ones who the next leader.
"The promotion of young executives should pave the way for the future of the junior Chung," he said. Eui-sun is the chairman’s only son and the group’s vice chairman.
According to Lee Hang-koo, a senior researcher at the Korea Institute for Industrial Economics and Trade, carmakers are “injecting younger blood” into their organization to cope with “a paradigm shift and lead innovations."