Carlos Goshn

Supervisory Boards: The lessons of the Carlos Goshn case

As almost all managers today talk about team spirit, social competence and ethics, it is sometimes forgotten that they still exist, the Sun Kings on the executive floors. But usually you don’t recognize them at first sight, because they light rhetorical smoke candles or develop their hubris little by little. Supervisory boards must therefore be permanently vigilant – and can learn from the scandal surrounding former Nissan Renault Mitsubishi boss …

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AGM season: Who buys the approval of the shareholders?

Where once socialist majorities were the order of the day, board members and supervisory board members now frequently experience real tremors: The danger of painful defeats at the AGM has increased significantly since more and more investors have taken their rights as owners seriously. In a particularly sensational case, Stefan Wolf, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Norma, was caught in the 2018 AGM season and sent into the desert …

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Joe Kaeser

Joe Kaeser: How the Siemens boss promotes populism

We recently praised Siemens CEO Joe Kaeser for his clear stance against populism and his commitment to European governance culture. Because we are convinced that top managers now have to show their colours. At the same time, however, they must be measured by their words – through value-based, responsible corporate management. We don’t want to deny that to Joe Kaeser, but we want to point out a discrepancy: Anyone who …

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Manager salaries: Beiersdorf and the Heidenreich salary

Performance must be rewarded, no question. But especially when everyone is talking about team spirit, the lead of the first management team should not be too big. This is another reason why the Beiersdorf Supervisory Board around Reinhard Pöllath must now be asked: Was the salary of 23.4 million euros, which Stefan Heidenreich, who has since retired as CEO, collected according to Capital 2018, really in the interest of the …

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Women’s quota: How Zalando & Co. provoke new laws

Yes, a target figure of “0 percent” for the women’s quota may make sense temporarily – for example, if a board consists of only two to three men who have different “mindsets”. However, in such cases companies have to take the trouble to explain their motives in a comprehensible way in the annual report. Unfortunately, this is often not the case. The Handelsblatt, for example, criticises the automotive supplier Norma, …

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Wolfgang Reitzle

Wolfgang Reitzle: Pioneer of an excessive shareholder value culture?

At Linde, another wind is blowing after the merger with the US company Praxair. This is the clear message of a double interview with CEO Steve Angel and Chairman Wolfgang Reitzle in the Handelsblatt: From his point of view, “continuous improvements and shareholder value” are central, said Angel, who last collected 22 million dollars a year. Wolfgang Reitzle also spoke in detail about the shareholders and referred several times to …

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Katarina Barley

Code reform: Where’s Barley?

At the level of state secretaries and ministry officials, i.e. in the engine room of power, so to speak, some are interested in accompanying the reform of the Corporate Governance Code. Stefan Ramge, head of department at the Federal Ministry of Finance, for example, has written an expert statement on the government commission’s draft – and has not spared no criticism in it. But the heads of department have so …

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Bilfinger Managerhaftung

Manager liability at Bilfinger: Wilsing vs. Hoffmann-Becking

Do twelve former Bilfinger Executive Board members have to pay damages because they have done too little against corruption and thus caused the company several scandals? Two luminaries of their guild have different views: Hans-Ulrich Wilsing (Linklaters) sees “serious breaches of duty”, Michael Hoffmann-Becking (Hengeler Mueller) considers the failures to be manageable. The Bilfinger Supervisory Board has therefore commissioned a third expert opinion on manager liability, this time from Matthias …

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Olaf Scholz

State enterprise: Super Supervisory Boards Scheuer & Scholz?

For his proposal to pursue a more active industrial policy and promote “European champions”, Economics Minister Peter Altmaier (CDU) had to put up with criticism from regulators. However, two of his colleagues in the cabinet have long been acting as if politicians were better entrepreneurs: Federal Transport Minister Andreas Scheuer (CSU) seems to see himself at Deutsche Bahn as a kind of super-supervisory board that can set guard rails without …

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Dieter Zetsche: Higher manager salaries = better bosses?

Since the “BILD am Sonntag” reported on the lavish pension claims of outgoing Daimler boss Dieter Zetsche, manager salaries have once again come into the public spotlight. The Handelsblatt, for example, was right to point out that in times of millions in salaries, board members can provide for their old age themselves. On the other hand, in the competition for management talent, supervisory boards sometimes have to (may) pull out …

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Gerry Weber

Gerry Weber: Was the supervisory board independent enough?

To make it quite clear: insolvency is not a disgrace; and if Germany is to mature into a founding and entrepreneurial republic, we must give up general criticism and malice. Of course, this also applies to the insolvency of Gerry Weber, especially since digitalization and new customer preferences are currently posing special challenges for the fashion industry. However, objective causal research is important, and we are particularly interested in the …

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Anna Maria Braun

Oetker Advisory Board: Family dispute over new supervisory board member Braun

In December we reported on the entry of Anna Maria Braun (39) into the Oetker Advisory Board. What we didn’t suspect yet: The nomination of the designated CEO of the medical technology group B. Braun Melsungen, initiated by August Oetker (74), head of the advisory board, has triggered a fierce family dispute. According to a report in the Handelsblatt, Alfred Oetker (52), vice chairman of the advisory board, wanted to …

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