[Photo by MK DB]
South Korea`s fourth largest conglomerate LG Group is staying committed to workforce expansion regardless of challenges from economic uncertainties to strengthen future growth pillars of artificial intelligence (AI), battery and OLED businesses.
According to the industry on Monday, LG’s four core subsidiaries – LG Display, LG Innotek, LG Chem and LG Energy Solution – added 8,311 employees from July 2021 to June 2022. LG Display hired the largest number of 2,878, while LG Innotek recorded the highest rate of increase at 27 percent.
LG Display’s new hires mostly filled R&D positions to develop next-generation display technologies along with OLED business expansion. The firm raised the R&D budget to 9 percent of the total revenue to put its whole energy into devising cutting-edge products and technologies. Demand for OLED panels has been steadily grown and they are now widely used not only in TVs and mobile devices but also in notebooks, computers and automobiles.
LG Innotek added 2,861 new workers to fill positions, mainly in the camera module department—its core area with high growth. As more consumers want premium smartphones, demand for high-end optical solutions is also growing rapidly. The firm invested 1 trillion won ($699 million) in building new production facilities to meet the rising demand.
LG Energy Solution has also increased investment and employment despite commodity price hikes and runaway inflation. It has continued hiring entry-level college graduates through partnership programs with prestigious universities and focused on nurturing talents through its educational facility named LG IBT.
LG Chem has hired 700 new workers in battery materials, such as cathode materials and carbon nanotubes. The firm holds a total R&D workforce of 3,300 after adding 500 new researchers in March this year. It plans to invest 1 trillion won in R&D activities, up 35 percent from a year ago.
Koo Kwang-mo, Chairman of LG Group, pledged to hire 10,000 people yearly to add 50,000 workers in five years in the strategic meeting in May. More than 10 percent of the increase will fill R&D positions in AI, software, big data, eco-friendly materials, and batteries that are the group’s core growth engines.
It has opened partnership programs in these areas with universities to hire graduates. It built an AI research center in 2020 and for five years, it will make a group-wide investment of 3.6 trillion won in AI and data fields.
By Lee Seung-hoon and Jenny Lee
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business Newspaper & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]