In 1965, Ho-Am had embarked on another project, that of establishing Samsung Culture Foundation. Already renowned as Korea’s most successful entrepreneur, he was turning his attention to methods of making direct contributions to society. He had made up his mind on establishing the foundation, and announced his plans to his family on his 55th birthday. He then conducted intensive investigations into fundraising methods, managerial operations, and activities of such internationally renowned organizations such as the Nobel Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation.
He decided that in order to guarantee the independence and permanency of the foundation, he would have to remain aloof of the foundation’s endowment. He therefore donated one billion Won worth of stock and 330,000 square meters of land. He also drew up a condition in the charter that should the foundation be terminated for any reason that its property should be turned over to the government. This was to guarantee that the foundation’s property would in no way come under the control of private concerns and interests. In June 1971, Ho-Am additionally contributed one-third of his remaining assets, or about 6 billion Won, to the foundation.
The purpose of Ho-Am’s establishing the foundation was to enhance moral principles and to support the establishment of values. He was perturbed by the vicissitudes of the times and the ensuing rapid decline in public morals. He also felt that an entrepreneur could not find happiness and satisfaction merely through materialism. He was frustrated by and despised the prevailing attitudes of justifying the means for the gratification of egotistical desires and goals. Although he fully realized that such trends could not be changed overnight, he felt a sincere obligation to do his own part to rectify the prevailing situation, and thus established the foundation as a step in the right direction.