Volkswagen looking at hiring Karl-Thomas Neumann – Opel’s CEO

VW could place Neumann at the helm of Audi.

As per a source familiar with the matter at hand, following a media report that Opel’s CEO will quit his job, Volkswagen may possibly hire him to lead its Audi brand.

Karl-Thomas Neumann, Opel’s boss plans on resigning from his post as General Motors is preparing to sell the brand to the PSA Group.

German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung (FAS) had reported, without citing any sources, that Neumann saw the sale as the right strategic step, but was concerned since PSA under-estimated the growing importance of electric cars.

Sources say, Volkswagen’s bosses had informally discussed giving Neumann a prominent role in the company, including heading its premium Audi brand.

VW and Opel declined to comment.

Rupert Stadler, Audi’s CEO has been under a cloud over his handling the fallout of VW’s diesel emissions scandal.

As per two sources, his five year contract got extended last month only because of an agreement among VW’s supervisory board members that he would not serve out his full term.

Stadler has defended his record at the company. In an interview with Automobilwoche, a German trade publication he said, “The diesel crisis has consumed and is still consuming resources. I’m still convinced that we have initiated the right strategic steps.”

As per the FAS, at the company’s next board meeting on June 22, Neumann, 56, will inform Opel’s supervisory board on his decision to join the company.

He has made it clear that he will remain in the company until GM completes the sale of Opel to PSA.

Pending regulatory approval from antitrust authorities, Opel said the $2.5 billion (2.2 billion euros) deal could complete as early as July 31.

($1 = 0.8935 euros)

Categories: Creativity, Entrepreneurship, HR & Organization, Regulations & Legal, Strategy

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