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Willmott takes helm at Zenith.

GLENVIEW, ILL.--Peter Willmott has been named president and chief executive officer of Zenith Electronics Corp.

Willmott had been Zenith's interim president and chief executive, overseeing day-to-day activities since the end of July, following the resignation of Albin Moschner.

Willmott has been on Zenith's board of directors since 1990. He is a former president, chief operating officer and chief financial officer of Federal Express Corp., and CEO Carson Pirie Scott. He sits on a number of corporate boards, including those of FedEx and McFrugal's Inc.

In a statement from the company, HJ Lee, Zenith's chairman, said Willmott has demonstrated the "strong leadership and management stability necessary to accelerate Zenith's turnaround efforts."

Zenith's largest shareholder is LG Electronics Inc. (LGE) of Seoul, South Korea, which owns 55 percent of the company's outstanding shares LGE acquired majority interest in November 1995 in a $351 million transaction.

LGE U.S., a subsidiary of LGE's North American Operations, manufactures and markets Goldstar branded home appliances, information systems and multimedia products.

Over the years, Zenith has been battered by price-cutting by Asian and European competitors. The company hasn't produced a full-year profit since 1984. In 1995, Zenith lost $92 million.

Since the acquisition, Zenith has been working to redefine itself. There have been shifts in management, and product and marketing strategies. However, Moschner resigned on the heels of a $33.2 million second-quarter loss.

Willmott said, "Zenith has tremendous opportunities for long-term growth and profitability. But we must become more customer-focused, efficient, productive and flexible for Zenith to achieve its long-term goals and meet the many challenges we face in the short term "

Due to executive changes at LGE, there have been several shifts on Zenith's executive committee board. John Koo, president and chief executive officer of LGE, has been named vice chairman of Zenith's board.

Zenith's spokesman said Koo will help Lee direct the board's strategy. Koo had been chairman of the executive committee of Zenith's board since November 1995, when LG electronics purchased a majority interest in Zenith.

At LGE, KS. Cho has been named president of the company's North American Operations. He will succeed Koo as chairman of the executive committee of Zenith's board. Cho has been a Zenith director since November 1995.

Cho most recently was managing director of corporate planning and coordination for LGE. In his new post, Cho will have general management responsibility for all LGE business activities in North America.

Cho succeeds Nam K. Woo as president of North American Operations. Woo has been named managing director of the corporate planning and coordination board. He will oversee LGE business strategies worldwide and report to Koo. Woo also becomes a member of the management board of LGE in Seoul.
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Title Annotation:Peter Willmott named president of Zenith Electronics Corp.
Author:Bloomfield, Judy
Publication:HFN The Weekly Newspaper for the Home Furnishing Network
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Nov 11, 1996
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