Retail | Wholesale | Food | Beverage 2023: CHAE-UNG UM
CEO, STARKIST, RESTON
In January, Um became CEO of StarKist, the packaged tuna and chicken company that moved its headquarters to Northern Virginia last year from Pittsburgh.
Owned by Dongwon Industries, a South Korean seafood company, StarKist has 4,000 employees globally and revenue of $210 million.
Having joined StarKist in November 2022, Um replaced former CEO Andrew Choe. Formerly a senior vice president of procurement at Seoul-based LG Electronics, Um came to StarKist with a challenge already in front of him: a lawsuit against the company, its parent and Del Monte, claiming that they conspired to fix and raise the price of canned tuna in the United States. In April, a federal judge granted a partial summary judgment on some of the claims, narrowing the lawsuit filed in Southern California. StarKist pleaded guilty to price fixing and was fined $100 million in 2018, and the current class action lawsuit by direct purchasers, including grocery stores, is an outgrowth of the federal price-fixing investigation.
A West Point graduate with an international MBA from Baldwin-Wallace University, Um has worked for Westinghouse, Merck, Dade Behring and Praxair.