Volkswagen Group makes extensive structural and management realignment
• Prof. Dr. Winterkorn: “Important building block for implementing Strategy 2018 –
stronger management links reflect strong growth”
• New Group Board of Management function for “China” to be led by
Prof. Dr. Jochem Heizmann
• Leif Östling to take charge of Group Board of Management
“Commercial Vehicles” function
• Extensive senior management reorganization also at brand level
Volkswagen is giving extra momentum to its Strategy 2018 with an extensive structural and management realignment. “Our company has grown strongly and become more international in recent years. This fundamental reorganization is the right response to the increasing challenges. At the same time we are laying the foundations for keeping the Group and its brands on their successful course even in a difficult market environment”, Board of Management CEO Prof. Dr. Martin Winterkorn said on Saturday. This followed the Supervisory Board’s approval of the planned measures at an extraordinary meeting.
Under the reorganization a new Board of Management function for “China” will be set up at Group level, thus underpinning the significance of the largest sales market in the world. The Volkswagen Group delivered some 2.3 million vehicles in the China region in the 2011 fiscal year and reported a pro rata operating profit there of €2.6 billion. Prof. Dr. Jochem Heizmann, latterly Group Board of Management member with responsibility for “Commercial Vehicles”, will head the new function.
The commercial vehicles business has become the second strong pillar for the Volkswagen Group in recent years. The further structuring of the “Commercial Vehicles” function in the Group Board of Management under the leadership of Leif Östling now paves the way for close cooperation between the MAN, Scania and Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brands to leverage synergies and jointly harness the substantial worldwide growth potential in this segment. In this context, the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brand will become part of the Commercial Vehicles business area going forward.
In his new function, Leif Östling, President and Chief Executive Officer of Scania until August 31, will be supported by a team comprised of managers from MAN, Scania and Volkswagen who will further networking and cooperation among the companies involved.
In addition to these measures at Group level, several important changes will also be made at brand level:
• As a member of the Executive Committee of the Volkswagen Group, Dr. Georg Pachta-Reyhofen, Chief Executive Officer of MAN SE, takes on additional responsibility for the Group-wide coordination of the industrial engines business and for MAN Power Engineering. Anders Nielsen, latterly Head of Production and Logistics on the Scania Executive Board, will become Chief Executive Officer of MAN Truck & Bus AG. Martin Lundstedt, currently Head of Franchise and Factory Sales on the Scania Executive Board, takes over as Chief Executive Officer at Scania.
• Dr. Eckhard Scholz, currently member of the Board of Management for Technical Development at ŠKODA, has been named Speaker for the Board of Management of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles in Hanover and will also hold responsibility for Technical Development.
• The new member of the Board of Management for Technical Development at ŠKODA is Dr. Frank Welsch, currently Head of Bodywork Development at the Volkswagen brand.
• Dr. Wolfgang Schreiber, currently Speaker for the Board of Management of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, has been appointed Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Bentley Motors in Crewe and President of Bugatti.
• Wolfgang Dürheimer, CEO of Bentley and President of Bugatti, moves to Audi in Ingolstadt to become the member of the Board of Management with responsibility for Technical Development. At the same time, Luca de Meo, currently Head of Marketing at the Volkswagen Group and the Volkswagen brand, becomes member of the Board of Management for Sales and Marketing at Audi. Dr. Bernd Martens, currently Head of New Product Start-ups in Volkswagen Group Purchasing, takes over as member of the Board of Management with responsibility for Purchasing at Audi.
These and further management appointments will chiefly come into effect on September 1, 2012.
The Volkswagen Group has without exception made all of these Board of Management appointments by taking senior managers from within the Company, including three female top managers who will assume responsibility at brand board of management level. “We are delighted that our Group has become a sought-after address for the best brains in the automotive industry. Thanks to our focussed recruitment drive of recent years, we have put together a top management team in the auto business. With the present changes, we have drawn on our own resources to further strengthen cross-brand international links and cooperation among management”, Board of Management member for Human Resources Dr. Horst Neumann explained.
Commenting on the upcoming changes, Prof. Dr. Martin Winterkorn said: “Our clear goal is to continue our successful course of recent years with great momentum and stability. I am convinced that now more than ever, the Volkswagen Group has the right people in the right positions to make our Strategy 2018 a success.”
Winterkorn also reiterated the Company’s unaltered management principles: “The multi-brand strategy is, and will remain, the foundation of Volkswagen’s success. All brands have a high degree of operational autonomy and responsibility. At the same time, we are now further intensifying knowledge transfer and management links within the Group. That is how we can leverage synergies and consistently harness growth opportunities – to the benefit of each individual brand and the Group as a whole.”