Volkswagen boss could be replaced in restructuring
Volkswagen boss could be replaced in restructuring
VW could make change at CEO by end of week as part of management reshuffle
13 April, 2018, 01:20
Volkswagen's board abruptly ended the tenure of Chief Executive Officer Matthias Mueller, a caretaker who revived the carmaker after its worst crisis on record, turning instead to a leader who can implement deeper changes, people familiar with the matter said.
BMWDiess, who has been pushing for changes in the brand's structuring, joined the company in mid-2015 before the diesel scandal broke.
Mr Mueller, a former Porsche boss, replaced Martin Winterkorn, who stepped down as the diesel scandal rocked the automotive industry.
Although Mueller's contract is not officially scheduled to terminate until 2020, Volkswagen said that the 64-year-old executive had "signaled his principal willingness" to help carry overhaul the company's management.
The potential restructuring was first reported by German magazine Der Spiegel.
Volkswagen shares, which closed 4.5 percent up on Tuesday after reports of Diess's likely appointment, gained 0.9 percent on Wednesday to 173.16 euros.
Volkswagen is considering a surprise management shakeup that could include replacing CEO Matthias Mueller.
Chairman Hans Dieter Poetsch is now in talks about changing the structure with fellow supervisory board members and members of the management board, Volkswagen said.
But the persistent tug of war between its controlling families, unions and other stakeholders have made it hard to drive through structural changes that investors have said are key to the company fulfilling its potential.
Diess, known as a "very good cost manager" with experience at BMW, would be "the best solution as a successor for the next five years", he added.
Diess and Mueller instead agreed to guarantee VW's German jobs until 2025 to get labour approval for a plan to turn the carmaker into a mass producer of electric cars. Muller's dismissal comes despite the company's strong performance last year which saw profits of €17bn (£14.8), a 16 per cent increase on the year before. According to the company, final decision is expected to be made by the end of the week.
Volkswagen and the works council declined to comment.
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