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Samsung Electronics might split into two

Samsung Electronics might split into twoSouth Korea's Samsung Electronics Co will review the possibility to divide the company into two as proposed by US activist hedge fund Elliott Management, Seoul Economic Daily reported on Monday, referring to an anonymous source.

A split would allow the heirs of the founding Lee family to strengthen their grip on the global smartphone leader, the crown jewel of the Samsung Group business empire. Elliott proposed a split in October to boost shareholder value.

Samsung's board of directors will meet on Tuesday and respond to Elliott's proposals, the newspaper said. The Korea Exchange separately asked Samsung to comment by 6 p.m. (0900 GMT) on whether it planned a spinoff.

The company did not immediately comment on the newspaper report.

The hedge fund wants Samsung Electronics to divide into a holding vehicle for ownership purposes and an operating company, pay a $26 billion special dividend, pledge to return at least 75 percent of free cash flow to investors and agree to appoint some independent directors.
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