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Foxconn says Gou will remain chairman, to withdraw from daily operations

Foxconn says Gou will remain chairman, to withdraw from daily operations
FILE PHOTO: Terry Gou, founder and chairman of Taiwan's Foxconn Technology, attends a session of the second annual World Internet Conference in Wuzhen town of Jinxing, Zhejiang province, China, December 16, 2015. REUTERS/Aly Song/File Photo -
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Aly Song(Reuters)
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By Yimou Lee

TAIPEI (Reuters) - Taiwan's Foxconn, an assembler of Apple Inc's iPhones, said Terry Gou will remain chairman of the world's largest contract manufacturer, though he plans to withdraw from daily operations.

The comment came after Reuters reported that Gou said he planned to step down in coming months to allow younger talent to move up the tech firm's ranks.

"His wish is to withdraw from daily operations after having developed and mentored a new generation of talent to carry on Foxconn's mission. As chairman, Mr Gou will continue to provide strategic direction and guidance," Foxconn said in a statement.

Asked by Reuters on Monday if he would quit as chairman, Gou said, at 69 years old, he was moving in that direction, though any decision needed to be discussed with Foxconn's board.

"I don't know where you got the information from. But I have to say, basically, I'm working towards that direction - to walk back to the second line, or retire," Gou said.

He also signalled a major management reshuffle.

"In the board meeting in April-May we will give the new list of board members to the board," Guo said without elaborating.

Foxconn, formally known as Hon Hai Precision Industry Co Ltd, is due to hold its annual general meeting in June.

Any management reshuffle would mark another top-level change at a major tech firm on both sides of the Taiwan Strait.

Morris Chang, founder of Apple supplier Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd (TSMC), retired as chairman last year. In September, Jack Ma, co-founder of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, said he would step down as chairman in a year to allow for younger management.

Founded in 1974, the Foxconn group is the world's biggest contract manufacturer with T$5.2 trillion (128.65 billion pounds) in annual revenue. It assembles goods for a miscellany of global tech firms but relies on Apple for over half of annual revenue, analysts said.

(Reporting by Yimou Lee; Writing by Anne Marie Roantree; Editing by Christopher Cushing)

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