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Is the Samsung brand in danger?

Posted by: Bruce Nussbaum on October 14, 2005

Imagine for a moment what would happen to Apple’s reputation and image among cool, hip consumers if it had to plead guilty to price fixing, was investigated by Congress for using a slush fund to buy political influence and was in trouble with regulators for financial shenanigans involving Steve Jobs and family ownership of the company—troubles that forced Jobs to leave the country for four months out of the year? Well Samsung is facing all those problems right now.

Samsung has built a terrific reputation. It one of the biggest winners of design awards, it is considered one of the most innovative companies in the world, and it is now one of the top global brands. Samsung is a huge and creative presence on the web. But an increasing number of scandals and run-ins with regulators and political leaders in South Korea may jeapordize its hard-won gains. A corporation that excels in innovation and design may not be able to maintain consumer loyalty if it’s corporate governance fails and it conducts its business in an unsavory way.

Reader Comments


October 14, 2005 7:25 PM

It seems true in principle, save that Samsung is located in South Korea, and it seems to me very doubtful that the average hip, Western teenager, or the tech-savvy executive will stop taking to Samsung design of flat-panel TVs or DVD-Rs just because of these investigations taking place quite far from where they live. Will it really matter for them?.
Andrea, Paris (France)

F. H.

October 15, 2005 1:27 AM

This is off-topic, but I spent 15 minutes to find BW's Letter to the Editor form, so I can't hunt for your's. This article is interesting because it reports on some of the same qualities of leadership and change and collaboration that characterize "design thinking," yet there are no "designers" involved - lawyers!

F. H.

Thriving in the middle: Whitham leads Foley Hoag by honing firm's focus," by Sheri Qualters, Boston Business Journal, 20051003 (


February 20, 2008 3:31 AM

i would not really care samsung is an amazing brand and will always be, consumers don't care about political problems they care about a product they can rely on and samsung is the company that is well capable of producing a reliable, long lasting and great quality product.


January 11, 2009 2:48 PM

Nah, Samsung is awesome, a few scandals in a country few have much knowledge of will not damage such a great company's reputation.

MBT Shoes Online

May 30, 2010 11:32 AM

It's so lucky for me to find your blog! So shocking and great! Just one suggestion: It will be better and easier to follow.

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Want to stop talking about innovation and learn how to make it work for you? Bruce Nussbaum takes you deep into the latest thinking about innovation and design with daily scoops, provocative perspectives and case studies. Nussbaum is at the center of a global conversation on the growing discipline of innovation and the deepening field of design thinking. Read him to discover what social networking works—and what doesn’t. Discover where service innovation is going and how experience design is shaping up. Learn which schools are graduating the most creative talent and which consulting firms are the hottest. And get his take on what the smartest companies are doing in the U.S., Asia and Europe, far ahead of the pack.

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