Samsung’s marketing boss could leave after poor sales

Samsung’s head of sales and marketing for mobile, D.J. Lee, is thought to be leaving the mobile phone giant after record marketing spend failed to arrest a major drop-off in mobile sales.

Samsung logo

According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, Lee could be leaving his position due to low smartphone sales. It is not yet known if he will be replaced.

A spokesman for Samsung declined to comment.

Samsung’s latest quarterly report showed that mobile sales fell 60% to 23.52, trillion won in the three months to October, from 35 trillion won a year earlier.

This despite record marketing spend in recent years. Reuters reported Samsung spent $14bn on advertising and promotion in 2013, equivalent to 5.4% of annual revenue.

In the UK, Samsung recently launched a £10m marketing campaign to launch the Galaxy Alpha smartphone with a campaign featuring Lily Allen. It also launched a major push for its Galaxy S5 smartphone earlier this year. 

The brand has struggled with Apple’s dominance in the premium side of the industry and a growth in competition from smaller brands such as Xiaomi and Meizu.

It has been suggested that there may be more mobile division job cuts, but it is yet to be confirmed.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here