By Martin Vedris

SYDNEY: Samsung Electronics has appointed from within to begin the year with a new director and general manager of sales and capitalise on the record performance the company achieved last year when it set a personal best of over $1 billion in sales.

In this Olympic year, as athletes all over the world will be chasing world records, Samsung is out to beat their own record. Last year Samsung Australia achieved a whopping 36 per cent growth year on year to get it across the line for $1 billion in sales, which according to the company was driven largely by the company’s Consumer Electronics business.

In order to improve on last year’s performance, Samsung has created a new senior CE sales structure. Michael Richardson will take on the newly created director of sales, Consumer Electronics position and Mark Beard will return to sales as general manager of sales, Consumer Electronics.

Promoted to director, Richardson will be responsible for the strategic direction of the CE sales and commercial sales business. He will also be responsible for strengthening and developing relationships with key CE customer stakeholders.

“Consumer demand for CE products will increase with major events like the 2008 Beijing Olympics so this new structure will allow us to have a greater focus on our distribution networks and key national accounts,” Richardson said.

“Together, the Samsung CE Sales team is looking forward to reaching new business goals.”

Formerly general manger of CE Sales, Richardson has over three years experience at Samsung and over 20 years industry experience.

Mark Beard, who has eight years experience at Samsung across multiple divisions, is taking over from Richardson and will be responsible for managing the national sales business including all state and national account managers. He will also be responsible for managing and maintaining Samsung’s national retail customer portfolio.

“I am excited by the opportunity to lead our national CE sales team into a very prosperous 2008 with both a buoyant industry and an excellent product line-up,” Beard said.

“I am confident our extremely passionate sales team will show the great commitment necessary for delivering even stronger results this year.”

Both Richardson and Beard are scheduled to begin in their new roles from 1 February.