German brake maker Knorr Bremse’s CEO resigns with immediate effect

No reason has been provided by Knorr Bremse for Klaus Deller’s removal as its CEO. Analysts believe Deller’s resignation may not have anything to do with the company’s financial performance or strategy.

In a significant development, Knorr Bremse, a brake systems manufacturer, stated, Klaus Deller, its CEO will be stepping down with immediate effect. Deller’s resignation is because of his conflicting views on leadership and cooperation.

With the news reaching the market Knorr Bremse’s shares fell by 6.1% on Tuesday.

Deller, 57, who rose to the helm in September, having been an executive board member since 2009, was instrumental in guiding Knorr Bremse during its initial public offering (IPO) – Germany’s second-biggest stock market debut in 2018.

Knorr Bremse’s supervisory board has initiated a search for a successor. In a statement the brake maker said, the remaining members of the executive board would jointly take on Deller’s responsibilities.

In 2014, German engineering group Schaeffler removed Deller as its designated CEO without giving reasons.

“The Supervisory Board stands fully behind the successful business strategy of Knorr-Bremse AG. Current business trading is fully in line with expectations,” said Knorr Bremse in a statement.

Knorr Bremse was included in Germany’s midcap MDAX index in March 2019.

The company has reported EBITDA of $1.32 billion (1.18 billion euros) in 2018 and has forecast an EBITDA margin between 18% to 19% for 2019.

“I regard the CEO exit as surprising,” said Ingo Schachel, an analyst at Commerzbank while adding, he does not believe that Deller’s exit had to do with Knorr Bremse’s financial performance or strategy.

($1 = 0.8913 euros)

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