(photo credit: JPOST STAFF)
SEOUL - South Korean conglomerate Samsung Group will make good on its sponsorship promises to the 2018 Winter Olympics despite being caught up in a corruption scandal that saw its chief arrested last week, Pyeongchang chief Lee Hee-beom said on Tuesday.
Samsung extended its TOP sponsorship contract as a worldwide partner to the Olympics in 2014, taking it through to the Tokyo 2020 Summer Games. It also signed a local sponsorship agreement worth more than $90 million to support the Pyeongchang Olympics.
The arrest of Samsung Group chief Jay Y. Lee on Friday over his alleged role in a corruption scandal that led parliament to impeach President Park Geun-hye has created something of a management vacuum at Samsung.
Some experts have said that while day-to-day running of the company is unlikely to be affected, longer-term decision making could be hindered.
POCOG chief Lee, speaking at a news conference in Sapporo, Japan during the Winter Asiad, said the conglomerate had already demonstrated its commitment to the Pyeongchang Olympics.
"Samsung has already committed to sponsoring the IOC and the Pyeongchang organising committee," Korea's Yonhap news quoted Lee as saying.
"Even with the recent scandal, I don't think (the Olympic sponsorship) will be affected.
"We already have the agreements, and Samsung has already donated and has agreed to sponsor (the Olympics). So I don't think it will be affected."
The alpine town of Pyeongchang marked the one-year countdown to the 2018 Olympics earlier this month.