Disruptive Forces: LG Electronics
Location: Seoul, South Korea
CEO: Yong Nam
Revenues: $68.8 billion
What they do: Maker of mobile and desktop computing gear, television and audio equipment, and home appliances
Disruptive qualities: Keyed on the company’s “Life’s Good” slogan, the company once known as Lucky-Goldstar has eclipsed its South Korean rivals when it comes to the little touches that make everyday products just a little better, a little more desirable and a whole lot more disruptive. The company rose from relative obscurity by ditching its commoditized “me too” offerings such as VCRs and CD players. After recasting the front-loading washer into the must-have appliance of the decade, LG added steam technology that kills allergens and reduces wrinkles to its clothes dryers. Devices such as the Chocolate phone have helped make LG the world’s fourth-largest cell-phone maker, and plenty of pundits think LG’s Prada out-iPhones the iPhone. Stay tuned for MPH, LG’s upcoming entry in mobile television.
The tech that makes them tick: LG’s IT ties together 77,000 employees in more than 120 locations. Suffering with bandwidth and latency problems, the company recently opted for an enterprisewide wide-area data service implementation. The move bolstered LG’s innovation engine, making its Lotus-based eNet intranet 20 times faster and nearly 40 percent cheaper to operate. By the end of this year, LG will also have one of the world’s largest implementations of Oracle’s platform, handling tasks such as human resources, customer relationship management and supply chain management.
Who they are disrupting: LG goes up against Samsung, Apple, Nokia, Motorola, GE, Whirlpool and Kenmore.