Hasso Plattner

Top vs. Flop: Hasso Plattner & Jennifer Morgan

What is more important – rapid growth or customer satisfaction? The SAP Supervisory Board in the Walldorf “Clash of Cultures” gave a convincing answer. What some dismissed as a “settling of accounts” with former CEO Bill McDermott was much more: In an interview with Handelsblatt last week, SAP founder Hasso Plattner gave deep insights into the company’s culture – and at the same time revealed the real reason for Jennifer …

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Top vs. Flop: Ertharin Cousin & Sigmar Gabriel

The Association of Supervisory Boards in Germany (VARD) has some time ago an own diversity ranking of the Dax supervisory boards presented. The idea behind this was that diversity is much more than the quota of women: it is about different ways of thinking, perspectives and networks. Therefore, one of the criteria of the ranking was the diversity of demonstrable relationships: Which committees are dominated by supervisory boards that are …

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Top vs. flop: Günther Fielmann and Kasper Rorsted

For Kasper Rorsted, another difficult week comes to an end. A few days ago, the Adidas boss had to announce poor figures for the first quarter – and get shareholders in the mood for even worse results in the current quarter. There is no doubt about it: Hardly any other manager has come under such public scrutiny during the Corona crisis. After Adidas announced that it was suspending rent payments …

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Martin Viessmann

Martin Viessmann: Family entrepreneur gets top supervisory board members

The traditional Hessian heating manufacturer Viessmann has set up a holding company with a prominent “Board of Directors”. In addition to the long-standing company boss Martin Viessmann (69) and his daughter Katharina, three external experts are represented on the board: Madeleine Jahr from the investment banking and consultancy firm GCA Altium, Flick-Gocke-Schaumburg partner Thomas Rödder and Oetker boss Albert Christmann act as “non-executives”. “With the Family Holding, we have created …

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Handelskonzern Metro

Jürgen Steinemann: Clear signal against collectivisation fantasies

“What had got into Jürgen Steinemann? What does he get out of it”, asked the Süddeutsche Zeitung provocatively – and harshly criticised the Metro supervisory board chairman: his behaviour contradicted “the spirit of co-determination”. Using the double voting right to push through the sale of the Real department store chain against the will of the employees raises fundamental corporate governance issues, the Süddeutsche Zeitung said. With all due respect: Jürgen …

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Stock exchange & quarterly reports: Oliver Bäte on Wiedeking’s tracks

We could write a lot of critical things about Wendelin Wiedeking, but he was right on one thing: The long-standing Porsche boss has persistently resisted the idea that companies on the stock exchange must publish quarterly reports. “We don’t even want to get into the short-winded view, which is based on quarterly targets,” Wiedeking once told Der Spiegel. Almost 20 years later, Allianz CEO Oliver Bäte is following in Wiedeking’s …

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Stefan Oschmann

Stefan Oschmann: Family entrepreneur spirit in a large corporation

The Darmstadt-based pharmaceutical group Merck, which is rich in tradition, has a very special structure: The “members of the Executive Board” around CEO Stefan Oschmann are also personally liable partners. In case of emergency “the first thing I do is lose my private money”, Oschmann said recently in an interview. “I’m fully adhered.” And even beyond that, the top managers at Merck KGaA are almost on a par with real …

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Herbert Diess

VW boss Herbert Diess: Cultural change through new bonuses?

The problem with many compensation systems is that managers have great opportunities for lavish bonuses, but hardly any risks. Entrepreneurial thinking is not encouraged in this way – on the contrary: the system creates incentives to increase sales and/or profits in the short term, which is often at the expense of long-term development opportunities (keyword reputation). For this reason it is, in our view, a logical reaction to the diesel …

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Appeal to Weimer & Jetter: Make the stock exchange a better place

Ulrich Seibert of the Federal Ministry of Justice pointed out the delisting trend at the German Supervisory Board Congress (DART) in November: More and more companies are saying goodbye to the stock market. And this is not just because private equity investors are swimming in money and buying up companies. Another major cause is the pressure from impatient investors, which in our view is a fire hazard: Time and again, …

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Public Governance

Henriette Reker: Cologne code against Cologne clique?

Whether you support it or not, we are experiencing a renaissance of industrial policy. Politicians of all stripes are placing growing hopes in public companies – especially with a view to climate protection: Rail should become a real alternative to domestic flights. Municipal transport companies are to develop innovative mobility platforms. Public utilities are to produce green electricity and build charging stations for electric cars. However, we fear that as …

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Armin Laschet

Armin Laschet vs. Stephan Weil: Who is the father of corporate governance?

Stephan Weil fights tirelessly for the automotive industry. Anyone who says that in ten years’ time there will no longer be any combustion engines will “see the most important industry in this country against the wall”, said the SPD politician last week. The problem: As a listener one wonders who is speaking – the Prime Minister of Lower Saxony, who is committed to the welfare of all citizens? Or the …

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