Bayer Names New Chairman

Effective May 1, 2016, Werner Baumann will become the new chairman of the Board of Management of Bayer AG. This was decided by the company's Supervisory Board. The current CEO of Bayer AG, Dr. Marijn Dekkers, proposed to the Supervisory Board that his contract be dissolved effective April 30, 2016, following the Annual Stockholders' Meeting. The Supervisory Board approved this proposal. Dekkers is leaving Bayer to become chairman of Unilever N.V. and Unilever PLC, succeeding Unilever’s current chairman, Michael Treschow.

The change in leadership comes as Bayer positions itself as a pure-play life sciences company. The German chemical conglomerate first announced in September 2014 that it would demerge its material science business and float it as a separate company, now called Covestro, leaving the strategic focus of Bayer on its life sciences businesses, which include pharmaceuticals, consumer healthcare, and crop science. Bayer intends to float Covestro on the stock market by mid-2016 at the latest

“With its clear focus on the Life Science businesses and its new organizational structure, Bayer is in a position of strength. The course for successful future development has already been set at all levels. Also with a successor from within the company, there will be no need for a familiarization period. I would like to wish Werner Baumann every success in his new role,” said Dekkers, whose contract was originally set to run until December 31, 2016. At the present time, Baumann is the Board member with responsibility for Strategy and Portfolio Management. He will retain these functions in the future. Going forward, the Board of Management of Bayer AG will comprise seven members instead of eight.

Dr. Dekkers has been Chairman of the Board of Management of Bayer AG since October 1, 2010. He began his professional career in 1985 as a scientist at the corporate research center of General Electric in the United States, gaining experience in various units of the company before joining AlliedSignal (subsequently Honeywell International Inc.) in 1995. In 2000, Dekkers became Chief Operating Officer of Thermo Electron Corporation,a manufacturer of laboratory instruments (later renamed Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. following the acquisition of laboratory supplier Fisher Scientific). As of 2002, he served as this company's President and CEO. After spending 25 years of his career in the United States, Marijn Dekkers joined Bayer on January 1, 2010. He is also a member of the Board of Directors at General Electric in the United States. In September 2014, he took over the two-year presidency of the German Chemical Industry Association (VCI), Frankfurt. He is also a Vice President of the Federation of German Industries (BDI), Berlin.

Deekers will be nominated for election to the Boards at Unilever’s Annual General Meetings (AGMs) in April 2016. Michael Treschow will retire from Unilever at the 2016 AGMs after having served Unilever’s usual maximum tenure of nine years as chairman. He joined the Unilever Boards in 2007 and was the first independent, non-executive chairman of Unilever.

Source: Bayer and Unilever 


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