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Corporate Governance – portrayed in the individual cultural and legal framework, from the standpoint of equity capital.

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Pfeiffer Vacuum Technology AG: How to set the Management Board in Motion

Occasionally, news of board members saying goodbye can give cause for thoughts. Take for example Pfeiffer Vacuum. On June 10th, investors could read: “Supervisory Board adopts new Management Board and expanded management structure and sets the course for a rejuvenated management team with new Chief Executive Officer.” Ups, ones may start to wonder who creates these marketing slogans. Or did this accident only happen because the message was to be distracted with many keywords? We´re still looking, though.

Effective January 1st, 2021 the Management Board of Pfeiffer Vacuum will look slimmer. The new structure takes into consideration the Relationship Agreement with the Busch Group. The new structure only provides for two board members, namely a CEO (who is also the Chairperson of the Management Board) and a COO. The board will be assisted by a Group Executive Committee, which in addition to the members of the Management Board will include in particular the CFO, the Chief Sales Officer, and the CTO.

Unfortunately, the release did not explain why the new structure reflects the agreement. So while we are sitting in the dark here, the release further illuminates the perspective for changes on the Management Board. The Supervisory Board has also appointed Dr. Britta Giesen as a new member of the Management Board as of October 1st, 2020. She is the designated Chairwoman of the Management Board and will take over this function from the current Chairman Dr. Eric Taberlet, who is expected to retire on January 1st, 2021.

Would that be a restructuring-related retirement, after all? And just by the way we learn that the CFO, Ms. Nathalie Benedikt, “currently a member of the Management Board and Chief Financial Officer”, will leave the company by mutual agreement upon the regular termination of her appointment at the end of the year. I love marketing blabla, but not so much in ad hoc-releases. So is she leaving the company by mutual agreement, or is she leaving the company upon the regular termination of her appointment? And while we´re at it, the Chairwoman of the Supervisory Board of Pfeiffer Vacuum and Co-CEO of Busch SE, Ms. Ayla Busch, thanked Ms. Benedikt for her dedication and commitments to Pfeiffer Vacuum over the past three years. Ms. Benedikts´ first term as CFO started in 2013. But we don´t need a CFO on the Management Board, right?