• Germany's news in English

Lufthansa ex-CEO lands top job despite wrangle

The Local · 8 May 2013, 16:16

Published: 08 May 2013 16:16 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

In a last minute change-of-heart on Monday evening, Mayrhuber said he had secured the support of important investors and would be standing after all.

The 66-year-old who stepped down as Lufthansa's CEO in 2010, had been nominated to take over from Jürgen Weber, but on Monday afternoon briefly said he had decided not to stand.

Influential US consultant firm Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS), had initially advised its customers - who between them hold around 36 percent of Lufthansa's shares - to vote against the former CEO at Tuesday's meeting.

ISS said Mayrhuber - who is also on the supervisory boards of BMW, Munich Re insurance company and Infineon semiconductor producer - had too much else on his plate.

At the same time, wrote Der Spiegel magazine on Wednesday, Lufthansa couldn't risk open conflict with ISS - a highly influential company, which advises 1,700 institutional investors, notably hedge and investment funds in the US.

But, presumably after a series of hectic phone calls, Lufthansa managed to convince ISS to back Mayrhuber if he stepped down from one or several of the other supervisory boards, said the magazine.

The reversal came late on Monday evening - just in time to install the former CEO with 63.2 percent of the vote at Tuesday evening's meeting.

Mayrhuber's predecessor Weber was furious at the embarrassing débacle and in a speech on Tuesday blamed a “difficult consultancy company” and their “purely formulaic criteria of an interpretation of corporate governance.”

Story continues below…

Lufthansa spokesman Jürgen Homeyer confirmed to Der Spiegel that the airline had known for some time that ISS would kick up a stink about Mayrhuber, whom it had dismissed as “over-boarded” in a report shown to the airline on April 15.

The Local/jlb

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Creepy clown scare spreads to Germany
Two of the clowns were apparently equipped with chainsaws. Photo: Pedro Pardo / AFP file picture

Police said Friday five incidents involving so-called scary clowns had occurred in two north German town, including one assailant who hit a man with a baseball bat, amid fears that Halloween could spark a rash of similar attacks.

Student fined for spying on women via their webcams
Photo: DPA

Student from Munich fined €1,000 for spying on 32 different computers, using their webcams to take photographs, or record their keyboard history.

This is how much startup geeks earn in Germany
Photo: DPA

A comprehensive new survey of 143 startup founders shows how much you are likely to be earning at a German startup, from entry level all the way up to sitting on the board.

Man dies after beating for peeing near Freiburg church
The Johannes Church in Freiburg. Photo Jörgens Mi/Wikipedia

A middle-aged man from southern Germany has died after being attacked by a group of men who took umbrage with the fact he was urinating in the vicinity of a church.

The Local List
Seven German celebrities with uncanny doppelgängers
Former Berlin mayor Klaus Wowereit and actor Alec Baldwin. Photo: DPA; Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons

Check out these seven look-a-likes of well known German figures - we admit that some are more tenuous than others...

Israel seeks to buy three new German submarines: report
A Dolphin class submarine. Photo: DPA

Israel is seeking to buy three more advanced submarines from Germany at a combined price of €1.2 billion, an Israeli newspaper reported Friday.

Here’s where people live the longest in Germany
Photo: DPA

Germans down south seem to know the secret to a long life.

More Germans identify as LGBT than in rest of Europe
Photo: DPA

The percentage of the German population which identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender is higher than anywhere else in Europe, according to a new study.

'Reichsbürger' pair attack police in Saxony-Anhalt
File photo: DPA.

A "Reichsbürger" and his wife attacked police officers on Thursday, just a day after another Reichsbürger fatally shot an officer in Bavaria.

Five things not to miss at the Frankfurt Book Fair
Photo: DPA

From consulting a book doctor to immersing yourself in an author's world with the help of virtual reality, here are five things not to miss at this week's Frankfurt Book Fair, the world's largest publishing event.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
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
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd