South Korean tech giant Samsung Electronics is using a form of electronic voting for the first time for this year’s annual general meeting on the 18th of March, urging shareholders to use it in order to minimise the risk of spreading coronavirus.
Samsung’s AGM is taking place at a convention centre in Suwon, about 30 km (18 miles) south of Seoul, with a capacity of about 3,000 people according to the centre website. Samsung’s investor relations website on Monday urged shareholders to take advantage of the chance to vote via the internet up to March 17.
The company conducted a 1-to-50 stock split in 2018, leading to a massive increase in shareholder numbers.
In what is the second-largest outbreak in Asia after China, South Korea reported 74 new coronavirus infections on Monday, bringing the country’s total to 8,236.
Reflecting on guidance from the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance, the company specifically called for electronic voting by shareholders with symptoms, or who have visited regions with high-risk regions, or who are identified as high-risk such as pregnant women and those aged 65 or above.
The shareholders’ meeting will be equipped with thermal cameras and contactless thermometers, and shareholders with fever or cough symptoms may be restricted from entering. Those with a fever at the scene will be directed to a location away from the main hall, the website said.
Other Samsung affiliates, including Samsung Electro-Mechanics, Samsung SDI and Samsung SDS will also hold annual general meetings on Wednesday.
World’s second-largest memory chip maker SK Hynix, which will hold its AGM on Friday, plans to seat shareholders about two metres away from each other, a spokesman said.
(Via Reuters; Reporting by Joyce Lee; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell)