Deutsche Bank: Wynaendts to be chairman of the board in 2022

Frankfurt / Main (dpa) – Deutsche Bank is presenting a successor to its outgoing supervisory board chairman Paul Achleitner – and thus lands a surprise coup.

Alexander (Alex) Wynaendts should Achleitner after the general meeting on 19. May 2022 inherit, as Germany’s largest financial institution announced on Friday evening in Frankfurt.

The nomination committee of the supervisory board recommends proposing Wynaendts to the shareholders for election to the supervisory body at the general meeting next year . “It is intended to subsequently elect him as chairman and thus as successor to Paul Achleitner,” says the announcement. The supervisory board followed the recommendation of the nomination committee on Sunday.

The Dutchman Wynaendts instead of Weimer, Witter or Winkeljohann. All three Deutsche Bank supervisory boards had in the meantime been traded as possible candidates for the Achleitner successor: Deutsche Börse boss Theodor Weimer, ex-Volkswagen CFO Frank Witter and the long-standing European head of the auditing company PwC and today’s Bayer supervisory board chairman Norbert Winkeljohann.

Deutsche Bank also set the course at the weekend for a member of the Executive Board: Olivier Vigneron is to become the new Chief Risk Officer on June 1 2022, as the company announced on Sunday. Incumbent Stuart Lewis will leave the money house after 25 years of service at his own request after the general meeting 2022. Vigneron, currently Chief Risk Officer of the French bank Natixis, is due to join Deutsche Bank on March 1 2022 initially as a general representative, at which he has already been in the years 2002 worked until 2005.

Wynaendts’ nomination (61) founded the bank says that the manager has “extensive expertise and decades of experience in the financial sector worldwide”. Wynaendts began his professional career at ABN Amro, where he spent 13 years in private banking and investment banking in Amsterdam and London. From 2008 to 2020 he was head of the Dutch insurance group Aegon. Wynaendts is currently a member of several supervisory and administrative boards, including Citigroup, Uber Technologies and Air France KLM. He will give up his mandate at Citigroup.

The investment company Union Investment is skeptical about Wynaendts’ nomination. «It is not evident from his previous positions that he is familiar with German corporate governance. He also never ran a large bank himself, ”said Union Investment Manager Janne Werning to“ Handelsblatt ”. The fund house would have “definitely wanted an adequate training period for an external successor,” said Werning.

According to Deutsche Bank boss Christian Sewing, Wynaendts “stands for exactly what they do Deutsche Bank has always made a difference »:« He has extensive experience in the financial sector and an excellent network, not only in Europe, but also globally. ” In an internal e-mail to the workforce, Sewing praised how “structured and confident” the nomination committee had designed the process for Achleitner’s successor.

Achleitner has held one of the most important posts in the German economy for a remarkably long time held. But after ten years as head of the supervisory board of Deutsche Bank 2022 it should be over, as the 65 – year-old Austrian had repeatedly affirmed.

Achleitner still 2019 seemed to be a chief inspector on probation, shareholders demanded the «deselection of the Achleitner system». It has become increasingly clear since he took office in Mitte 2012: The house was by no means “swept clean”, as Josef Ackermann said when he left after a decade as Deutsche Bank boss in the spring 2012 had promised.

While the US competition cleared balance sheets and business immediately after the financial crisis, Deutsche Bank muddled through. And Achleitner had to put up with the question of whether the financial house would not be in a better position for a long time if the supervisory board had not held onto the wrong managers for too long. Sewing is the fourth CEO in the Achleitner era.

For a long time it looked as if Achleitner, once celebrated as a deal maker, had lost his luck with the mammoth task of realigning Deutsche Bank. But Sewing’s previous balance sheet gives the highest-paid chief controller of a Dax group hope that he can crown his farewell next year with the bank paying out profit for the first time since the financial year 2018. “Our bank is stable, many, if not all, problems of past years have been dealt with,” Achleitner sums up at this year’s general meeting. In the internal letter, Sewing praised: Achleitner’s leadership had “made a major contribution to the successful transformation of our bank.” the election of a further deputy chairman of the supervisory board in addition to the employee representative Detlef Polaschek should also be put on the agenda. Norbert Winkeljohann should be suggested for this function.

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