Classics New unrest at VW: Can boss Diess prevail?

17:10  25 november  2020
17:10  25 november  2020 Source:   pressfrom.com

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Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess . Photographer: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg. Listen to article. “Nokia is probably a good example of how such a change can happen—if you’re not fast enough, you’re not going to survive,” Diess , 62, told Bloomberg at VW headquarters in Wolfsburg, Germany.

Mr Diess is taking on the tough task of turning a supertanker around. Tales abound of tensions between Mr Diess and Bernd Osterloh, VW ’s pugnacious labour leader. Mr Osterloh has said that management should focus on its mishandling of new emissions tests in Europe, which delayed new

The dispute between Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess and the employees' side, which was laboriously resolved in the summer, could reignite. The reason for this should include the manager's ideas about filling top positions.

Der im Sommer nur mühsam beigelegte Streit zwischen Volkswagen-Konzernchef Herbert Diess und der Arbeitnehmerseite könnte sich an Personalvorstellungen des Managers neu entzünden. © Sebastian Willnow / dpa-Zentralbild / dpa The dispute between Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess and the employee side, which was laboriously settled in the summer, could be reignited by the manager's personal ideas.

According to information from the German Press Agency on Wednesday, Diess encounters resistance with some preferred candidates for management positions in the coming year.

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Volkswagen 's boss has warned that a deal with US authorities over its emissions scandal could take longer and cost more than expected. Speaking at the Geneva Motor Show, Matthias Mueller told the BBC that VW was still in "constructive dialogue" with regulators and hoped the firm would be "judged

VW boss Herbert Diess went on vacation with the new ID.3. Destination of the trip: Lake Garda. Diess has documented the trip together with his daughter on social media Thus Diess covered a distance of around 400 kilometers. Diess published a post on his profile on the professional network LinkedIn.

He is also said to have brought an early extension of his own contract, which runs until 2023, into play again. The chairman, who likes to be dashing and aggressive, reportedly failed as early as June - which led to a scandal in the supervisory board, as a result of which Diess had to apologize in order to avoid a possible impending recall. Works council chief Bernd Osterloh also sits in the closest circle of the supervisory body.

The group is primarily looking for a successor to CFO Frank Witter, who is highly valued within VW and who wants to quit in mid-2021 for personal reasons. Former head of finance for the core brand, Arno Antlitz - currently in the same position at Audi - is said to be a Diess favorite here. A replacement is also needed for former purchasing director Stefan Sommer, who gave up his post this year.

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But Volkswagen 's new boss Herbert Diess said last month that spinning off Diesel & Turbo, Renk or motorcycle brand Ducati was a possibility as the Diess has pledged to speed up Volkswagen 's drive to become more efficient in the wake of its 2015 diesel emissions scandal, as it seeks to fund a costly

From those around the supervisory board it was said that Diess was now bringing "certain ideas". "There are differences of opinion." But it is too early to make decisions: "The matter has until February or March." The "Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung" and the Bloomberg news agency had also reported on new discrepancies.

In the spring a conflict between Diess and Osterloh that had meanwhile been believed to have been pacified broke out again. Both had already clashed on the austerity program “Future Pact”. Then the top of the works council accused the CEO of having put the colleagues on the lines of the new Golf and ID.3 under excessive pressure.

After internal information about production problems and his alleged wish for an early contract extension had leaked out, Diess accused supervisory board members of criminal behavior: "These are crimes that happen in the supervisory board and can obviously be assigned there." In front of other managers, he also criticized “signs of a lack of integrity”. The investigations into market manipulation in the diesel scandal against himself and chief supervisor Hans Dieter Pötsch had only recently been suspended for a payment of 9 million euros.

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VW boss Winterkorn's highs and lows. VW scandal explained. Also on Friday, further details of the brands and locations of the 11 million cars involved in image captionHerbert Diess is a newcomer at Volkswagen . Another potential successor is Herbert Diess , the current head of the Volkswagen brand.

Mueller's replacement with VW brand chief Diess follows slow progress in reorganizing the group's car brands, a key pillar of "Strategy 2025" to transform The new car brands will be Volume, Premium and Super Premium. Earlier on Thursday, sources had told Reuters that VW would reorganize its brands

There was head shaking in IG Metall, which is very influential at VW, and representatives from several locations expressed their “increasingly massive” concern about the company's appearance in an open letter. It was sometimes heard from owner circles that Diess was about to be kicked out. Then he showed himself together with Osterloh at company events in a new harmony. However, there have also been several reports that the management issue in the group has not yet been resolved in the medium term. At least some representatives of the major shareholders are observing further developments critically and closely.

“The owners are still behind Mr. Diess”, it was said on Wednesday. But also on the subject of a possible early contract extension: "The question does not arise at the moment." Most recently, Audi boss Markus Duesmann and Porsche boss Oliver Blume were rumored to be conceivable aspirants for the overall management of the group.

Osterloh emphasized in the online network LinkedIn that he did not know of any disputes over board positions: "No supervisory board has ever dealt with the subject of personal data." He is optimistic that the right choice will be made in order to design the conversion with the right candidates - “in order to successfully develop Volkswagen together with Herbert Diess at the top over the next few years”. The state of Lower Saxony - represented with two seats on the supervisory board - was silent on the subject. In addition to all criticism,

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Diess also has many advocates. His strategy of setting up the world's largest car company with the recently launched ID series and other models as a provider of cheaper electric vehicles is perceived as bold in the industry. Investors praise his course of spending billions on digitization and at the same time increasing the profitability of the main brand - even if he recently had to leave management there to Ralf Brandstätter alone.

major investors also seem to back the VW group boss. Arndt Ellinghorst from the US investment house Bernstein, one of the busiest auto analysts on the financial scene, called for a word of power in an open letter to the owner families. In the summer, Diess' position was significantly weakened - but he enjoyed the trust of the overwhelming majority of owners on the way into the electric age. If Diess still has the full support of the Porsche / Piëch clan, this must be made clear.

The family did not want to comment on Wednesday. In the summer it was said: "The company has to get into calmer waters."

Other shareholders would like return pearls like Porsche to add more to value. The big hit has so far not been seen. Diess has set the bar high: VW's stock market value is expected to grow to 200 billion euros - currently it is only 80 billion, a fifth of the valuation of US rival Tesla of more than 400 billion euros. But it is not the big banks that have the say in Wolfsburg, but others: The Porsche and Piëch families hold 53 percent of the ordinary shares, the state of Lower Saxony 20 percent, and Qatar 17 percent.

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