From its inception as a small export business in Taegu, Korea, Samsung has grown to become one of the world's leading electronics companies, specializing in digital appliances and media, semiconductors, memory, and system integration. Today Samsung's innovative and top quality products and processes are world recognized. This timeline captures the major milestones in Samsung's history, showing how the company expanded its product lines and reach, grew its revenue and market share, and has followed its mission of making life better for consumers around the world.
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1997-1999 Advancing the Digital Frontier
Despite the 1997 financial crisis that affected nearly all Korean businesses, Samsung was one of few companies that continued growing, thanks to its leadership in digital and network technologies and its steady concentration on electronics, finances, and related services.
Samsung responded to the crisis by reducing the number of its affiliated companies to 45 (according to the Monopoly Regulation and Fair Trade Act), decreasing personnel by almost 50,000, selling 10 business units, and improving the soundness of its financial structure, lowering its 365 percent debt ratio in 1997 to 148 percent by late 1999.