Bayer & Temasek – the economic war reaches the AGM season

There are good reasons to criticize Bayer’s strategy. But the fact that the sovereign wealth fund of an autocratic country is blowing the whistle right now should set alarm bells ringing. Bayer is facing a turbulent Annual Stockholders’ Meeting on April 29. This year, opposition is coming not only from the usual suspects, but also from major shareholder Temasek. The Singapore sovereign wealth fund, which holds four percent of the …

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Cabal in Oldenburg: What’s going on at governance role model Cewe?

Dear readers of GermanBoardNews, one headline in particular has surprised me in recent days: “Cewe CEO Friege must go – against the will of the Supervisory Board,” was the headline in the Handelsblatt newspaper. Against the will of the Supervisory Board? The lawyer in me was particularly reluctant, and on top of that: I had previously counted the photo service provider from Oldenburg as one of the few corporate governance …

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Hare and Hedgehog? The race between the Codex Commission and the EU Commission

Dear readers of GermanBoardNews, until this Friday, those interested in corporate governance can comment on the reform proposals submitted by the Government Commission on the German Corporate Governance Code (GCGC). In justifying the need for reform, the Commission states: Those who manage or supervise companies must take “ecological and social sustainability” more into account in the future. According to DCGK Chairman Rolf Nonnenmacher, expectations in this regard have “become much …

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Alessandra Genco (BASF)

The chemical company BASF wants to rejuvenate and internationalize its Supervisory Board: At the Annual Meeting in May, shareholders are to elect Alessandra Genco to the board. The 48-year-old works full-time as chief financial officer of the Italian aerospace and defense company Leonardo SpA (formerly Finmeccanica) in Rome. The former Goldman Sachs banker is joined in the election by ex-Bosch manager Stefan Asenkerschbaumer (65). The newcomers are to replace former …

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Markus Steilemann (Fuchs Petroclub)

Mannheim-based lubricant manufacturer Fuchs Petroclub has proposed a prominent manager for its Supervisory Board: at the Annual General Meeting in May, shareholders are to elect Covestro CEO Markus Steilemann to the board. The MDax company made the announcement in January. If successful, the 52-year-old would take over the mandate of long-time BASF CEO Kurt Bock (63). The 63-year-old will step down after the Annual Shareholders’ Meeting. However, Markus Steilemann – …

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Is that it for the independence of supervisory boards?

Aareal Bank, Software AG, ThyssenKrupp: Is that it for the independence of supervisory boards? Dear readers of GermanBoardNews, what do you remember about the 2021 AGM season? My impression is: there is no significant reverberation. In the public perception, the shareholders’ meetings have been largely silent – also due to Corona and the Bundestag election campaign. And to date, the vast majority of the players seem deeply relaxed: After all, …

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Investors & auditors carry wrong thinking into companies

How investors and auditors bring wrong thinking into companies Dear readers of GermanBoardNews, it sounds as if a profound conflict is brewing. Financial investors have threatened the Big 4 to vote against their reappointment at general meetings in future, Manager Magazin reported at the beginning of the month. PwC & Co. would finally have to ensure that “climate-related risks are adequately considered and disclosed in annual financial statements”. I wonder, …

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ESG & Climate Protection: Without G there’s neither E nor S!

Without G, there’s no E or S: What ESG analysts and investors neglect Dear readers of GermanBoardNews, at the World Climate Conference in Glasgow – hopefully – important decisions are being made for the future of our planet. It is already clear that the summit will bring climate protection even more into focus, including for boards of directors, supervisory boards and shareholders ESG ratings will thus become even more important …

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Will supervisory boards have to call Greenpeace in future? Comments on the EU Governance Directive

Dear readers of GermanBoardNews, important decisions by boards of directors and supervisory boards could be significantly delayed in the future. With the “Directive on Sustainable Corporate Governance”, the EU is planning new due diligence requirements for decision-makers and expanded legal action options for civil society groups. The Commission intends to present a first draft this month. At the heart of the rules is the obligation to take into account the …

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Veteran managers continue to dominate supervisory boards. Why this urgently needs to change.

Dear readers of GermanBoardNews, we are witnessing the next showdown between investors and the company: Shareholder advisory firm ISS has recommended that Tesla shareholders remove two board members – Kimbal Musk (brother of company CEO Elon Musk), and James Murdoch (son of media mogul Rupert Murdoch). Murdoch’s actions in particular seem to be a thorn in the side of ISS experts. He sits on central board committees and is therefore …

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What the new generation of supervisory board members should be made of – and how we can pave the way for the right people to join these boards

Dear readers of GermanBoardNews, how do you become a board member? What do you have to be able to do or be? And what does corporate governance have to do with it? These questions occupy hundreds of women and men every year – for the most varied of motives (often they do not know them themselves). However, there is also a not insignificant number of people for whom these questions …

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What remains of the work of a supervisory board?

Dear readers of the GermanBoardNews, we are now back for you! The summer holidays are over, the madness of everyday life has long since caught up with us again. As always, we will keep calm and look at current topics through corporate governance glasses. The current situation: We have not heard much from the so-called Government Commission on the German Corporate Governance Code (DCGK) or from the Association of Supervisory …

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