• Germany's news in English

Porsche reportedly set to dump Wiedeking

AFP · 17 Jul 2009, 18:52

Published: 17 Jul 2009 18:52 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Der Spiegel magazine reported that the Porsche and Piech families that control the company would name production chief Michael Macht as new CEO of its core sports car operations.

But a Porsche spokesman told AFP: "Wiedeking is and remains the boss" of the company, while noting that Porsche would hold an extraordinary meeting of its supervisory board next Thursday.

The head of Porsche's works council Uwe Hück also voiced support for the boss, saying in a statement that "Wiedeking is the chief executive and will remain so." Hück said "false information" was the result of an attempt to "destroy a man."

Both Porsche and Volkswagen have called board meetings in Porsche's hometown of Stuttgart, raising speculation that a deal may be near. Wiedeking on Thursday personally denied rumours that he would resign as chief executive, saying he planned to complete his contract which expires in 2012.

He has come under fire after running up Porsche's debt as the company acquired nearly 51 percent of the shares in VW, and stock options for another 20 percent. Wiedeking had sought to buy 75 percent of VW's equity, but the collapse of global auto markets and stricter credit conditions as a result of the financial crisis thwarted his ambitions.

VW had since made a counteroffer for nearly half of the shares in Porsche, saying that a sale would allow it to trim its debt of around €9 billion ($12.6 billion).

Wiedeking is battling meanwhile to take on the Gulf state of Qatar as an investor in Porsche, and the families that control voting rights in the car maker are to study the question next week.

But Christian Wulff, regional premier of Lower Saxony, the German state that owns 20 percent of VW, said he wanted the group to integrate Porsche as its 10th brand. That position "should be supported by a large majority" on Thursday, Wulff told WirtschaftsWoche magazine in comments to appear in its Monday edition. He added that Qatar did not want a direct stake in Porsche but rather to invest in an integrated group.

Story continues below…

"Qatar is very well informed and intervened clearly and predictably with a desire to acquire a holding in a Volkswagen/Porsche group," Wulff said. He expressed no opposition to Qatar acquiring an eventual blocking majority in VW similar to one held by Lower Saxony thanks to a special law drawn up for the automaker.

"The VW law is not exclusively for Lower Saxony. Whoever owns 20 percent holds a blocking minority," he said.

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
These are Germany's top ten universities
The new library of Freiburg University. Photo: Jörgens.mi / Wikimedia Commons

These are the best universities in all of Germany - at least according to one ranking.

Introducing Swabians - 'the Scots of Germany'
Photo: DPA

These Southern Germans have quite a reputation in the rest of the country.

Woman sues dentist over job rejection for headscarf
Photo: DPA

A dentist in Stuttgart is being taken to court by a woman whom he rejected for a job as his assistant on the basis that she wears a Muslim headscarf.

Isis suspect charged with scouting Berlin attack sites
Photo: DPA

German federal prosecutors said Thursday they had brought charges against a 19-year-old Syrian man accused of having scouted targets in Berlin for a potential attack by the Isis terror group.

Berlin Holocaust memorial could not be built now: creator
The Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, in Berlin. Photo: DPA.

The architect of the Berlin Holocaust memorial has said that, if he tried to build the monument again today, it would not be possible due to rising xenophobia and anti-Semitism in Germany and the United States.

'Liberal' Germany stopping Europe's 'slide into barbarism'
Ian Kershaw. Photo: DPA

Europe is not slipping into the same dark tunnel of hate and nationalism that it did in the 1930s - mainly thanks to Germany - one of the continent's leading historians has said.

Eurowings strike to hit 40,000 passengers
Travelers impacted by the strike on Thursday wait at Cologne Bonn airport. Photo: DPA.

The day-long strike by a Eurowings cabin crew union is expected to impact some 40,000 passengers on Thursday as hundreds of flights have been cancelled.

Deutsche Bank reports surprise quarter billion profit
Photo: DPA

Troubled German lender Deutsche Bank reported Thursday a surprise €256-million profit in the third quarter, compared with a loss of more than six billion in the same period last year.

US 'warned Merkel' against Chinese takeover of tech firm
Aixtron HQ. Photo: DPA

The German government withdrew its approval for a Chinese firm to purchase Aixtron, which makes semiconductor equipment, after the US secret services raised security concerns, a German media report said Wednesday.

Long-vanished German car brand joins electric race
Photo: DPA

Cars bearing the stamp of once-defunct manufacturer Borgward will once again roll off an assembly line in north Germany from 2018, the firm said Wednesday.

10 German clichés that foreigners get very wrong
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
10 ways German completely messes up your English
Germany's 10 most weird and wonderful landmarks
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd