2023 Author: Eric Donovan | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-21 15:44
The leading forces of the Volkswagen Group are discussing the future course in an unofficial meeting in Braunschweig. It is said that no decision is made about people.
In the struggle for Volkswagen's new management culture, the most important players will come together for a top meeting on Friday, according to information from the German Press Agency. As the dpa learned from several sources familiar with the matter, leading members of the VW supervisory board as well as CEO Martin Winterkorn are represented at the shielded meeting at Braunschweig Airport.
Personal questions in the background
However, it is not an official meeting of the so-called Supervisory Board Presidium, which forms the head of the VW group controllers and has only had five members since the resignation of VW Patriarch Ferdinand Piëch at the end of April. According to dpa information, the leading VW drivers in Braunschweig are discussing the future group structure. Names for the next management tasks will not be decided.
"First the structure, then the people," said a source familiar with the processes. A member of the presidium and group works council boss had recently acted similarlyBernd Osterloh expressed. “We don't need a huge board with bloated staff. (…) We have to ask ourselves that for every function,”he told“Manager Magazin”at the end of May. In doing so, however, he restricted: “We will first talk about functions and structures; it will only be about people later. " One question has been unanswered since August 2014: After the departure of Group Production Director Michael Macht, his position is vacant.
MAN and Scania as pioneers
A first foretaste of the changes in the group that have been in the foreground since Piëch's departure recently came from the independent commercial vehicle holding for the VW subsidiaries MAN and Scania. It also has its own supervisory board in which the employees have considerable creative power based on the corporate model.
Similar steps towards decentralization are also conceivable for the car brands. In addition, according to dpa information, the meeting in Braunschweig is about Winterkorn's ideas for how individual regions and group subsidiaries could get more freedom without jeopardizing the effectiveness of the tried and tested central approach.
Aimed at decentralization
Lower Saxony's Prime Minister Stephan Weil (SPD), who like Osterloh is a member of the Presidium and represents the state's share package on the part of the shareholders, recently told the Hannoversche Allgemeine Zeitung that the pressure for new structures was also due to economic constraints. Since the individual global automotive markets have long since developed very differently, the group structure must be more closely aligned with local conditions. At the same time, however, the group should not become a "community of independent brands", but must continue to use common savings effects.
So far, the VW management in Wolfsburg controls the group centrally. China is an exception, where Volkswagen works with partner companies. The group is behind Toyotathe largest car manufacturer in the world and had recently grown rapidly. But this record speed also brought a number of problems to the twelve-brand empire. (dpa)