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Sep 18, 2015

RWE names ex-SAP CFO Brandt as potential chairman

FRANKFURT, Sept 18 (Reuters) – RWE named former
SAP finance chief Werner Brandt as its clear favourite
to take over as chairman next year, with the supervisory board
presenting a rare united front to end weeks of media

Chairman Manfred Schneider, 76, is set to step down in 2016
after having held the top job for seven years. RWE’s supervisory
board is notorious for political infighting, with the battle for
key positions usually fought out in the media.

Sep 15, 2015

Porsche CEO bids to run sports car brands in revamped VW

FRANKFURT, Sept 15 (Reuters) – Porsche’s top executive is
bidding to lead sports car operations at its parent Volkswagen
as Europe’s biggest automaker adopts a new structure
to boost foreign sales and profits.

The German company is aiming to decentralise, ceding more
power to foreign divisions and brands in a bid to boost sales in
the United States and other markets and become more nimble,
sources told Reuters in June.

Sep 2, 2015

VW’s CEO Winterkorn set to stay on for three more years

HAMBURG/STUTTGART (Reuters) – The executive committee of Volkswagen’s (VOWG_p.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) supervisory board has proposed extending Martin Winterkorn’s contract as chief executive until the end of 2018, the company said on Tuesday, opening the door to the appointment of a new chairman.

Volkswagen is still looking for a permanent successor to Ferdinand Piech, the former chairman who was ousted earlier this year after clashing with Winterkorn over strategy, leading to the appointment of former union boss Berthold Huber as interim chair.

Jul 21, 2015

SAP CFO says H2 pipeline looks very healthy

FRANKFURT/STUTTGART (Reuters) – SAP’s order pipeline for the second half of the year is “very healthy” and will offset a decline in sales from its packaged software products, which will pose no threat to the company’s full-year operating profit target, its finance chief said.

Europe’s largest software company on Tuesday posted worse-than-expected sales of its high-margin packaged software business.

Jun 17, 2015

Bilfinger cuts losses with sale of Power business

FRANKFURT/METZINGEN, Germany, June 17 (Reuters) – German
engineering services firm Bilfinger plans to put its
Power business up for sale, its new chief executive said on
Wednesday, cutting its losses after five group profit warnings
in the past year.

The loss-making unit, which accounts for about a fifth of
Bilfinger’s total output and employs 11,000 people, has failed
to keep pace with upheaval in Germany’s energy sector that has
hit some of its biggest clients, while forays abroad have had
little success.

Jun 17, 2015

Networked factories key to Daimler’s productivity drive

SINDELFINGEN, Germany (Reuters) – Having standardized the layout of its factories and connected them to a shared computer network, Daimler (DAIGn.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is now crunching data from them to identify the most efficient way of making a car, its head of production told Reuters.

Markus Schaefer said in an interview the analysis was at the heart of the luxury carmaker’s drive to improve productivity, and in turn boost profit margins in its battle with German rivals BMW (BMWG.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and Audi (VOWG_p.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz).

Jun 10, 2015

HeidelbergCement chooses shareholder payouts over acquisitions

BERLIN/STUTTGART, June 10 (Reuters) – Germany’s
HeidelbergCement said it would return more cash to
shareholders and be “disciplined” about acquisitions, having
chosen to stay out of a merger between rivals Holcim
and Lafarge that is reshaping the industry.

The company, which has met significant debt reduction and
other financial targets it set in 2009, said on Wednesday it
would focus on raising its dividend, expanding the company,
cutting debt further and possibly buying back shares.

May 13, 2015

BMW one big, happy family as squabbles damage rival Volkswagen

MUNICH/STUTTGART, May 13 (Reuters) – The normally secretive
family that owns BMW broke silence on Wednesday to
laud the company’s seamless management transition as rival
German carmaker Volkswagen inspects the damage from
a bitter leadership crisis.

The comments from Stefan Quandt, whose family controls a
stake of almost 47 percent in the Bavarian carmaker, highlight
the contrasting fortunes at two of Germany’s most influential

May 13, 2015

Piech misses Porsche AGM, as VW seeks to build bridges

STUTTGART/BERLIN, Germany, May 13 (Reuters) – Ousted
Volkswagen patriarch Ferdinand Piech did not attend
a shareholder meeting of the carmaker’s controlling clan on
Wednesday, fuelling uncertainty about his stake and future
involvement in the family business.

Piech, at the helm of Europe’s biggest carmaker for more
than two decades, was forced out as VW chairman last month over
his criticism of Chief Executive Martin Winterkorn, who was
backed by other stakeholders and family members.

May 8, 2015

Labour unrest looms at Germany’s stricken Bilfinger

FRANKFURT, May 8 (Reuters) – Bilfinger workers
will fight further job cuts at the struggling German engineering
services group, its works council said in a letter to

Bilfinger is in the process of cutting 1,250 jobs as part of
an efficiency programme and another 370 at its power division,
which has suffered worst from budget cuts at German utilities
reeling from the country’s switch to greener energy.