Wacker Neuson chief executive Martin Lehner will leave the business when his current contract expires at the end of March for personal reasons.
Non-executive director Kurt Helletzgruber, 68, will be seconded to the executive board until the end of June next year and stand in as interim chief executive and chairman of the executive board from January, while the company seeks a replacement.
Lehner started off in the hydraulics industry and joined Neuson Hydraulik in Linz, Austria in 1987 as a sales technician. He has held various management positions within the expanding business since then, remaining with the business through the 2001 merger with Kramer, joining the executive board in 2004, then participating in the 2007 merger with Germany’s Wacker in 2007, and the subsequent flotation on the stock market later that year. In 2017 he was promoted to chief executive and chairman - see: Wacker Neuson names new CEO.
Chairman of the supervisory board, Hans Neunteufel said: “The supervisory board of Wacker Neuson regrets Mr. Lehner’s decision and thanks him for his unwavering personal commitment. During his many years of successful work on the executive board, he has helped drive forward the group’s internationalisation and opened up new growth areas whilst continuously developing the corporate strategy together with the entire executive board. With the departure of Martin Lehner, Wacker Neuson is losing a valued CEO, who has shaped the company with his commitment, expertise and innovative drive. We wish Mr. Lehner all the best for the future.”
“After reporting average growth rates of 11 percent over the course of the last 10 years, the Wacker Neuson group clearly deviated from its growth path in 2020 as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. By developing a new streamlined and agile management and organizational culture, Mr. Lehner has now helped make the group even more robust and successful in the long term.”
Lehner added: “I have spent many successful years at the Wacker Neuson group. During this time, the organisation has grown to become a leading manufacturer of light and compact equipment. Now, the time has come for me to focus on new tasks and challenges. I am extremely grateful that I have been able to help the group on its path to becoming an internationally successful group and technology leader. My special thanks go to the many colleagues who – with their passionate commitment and high level of identification with our company – have made my time at Wacker Neuson very valuable to me. I have always been passionate about areas of future significance such as zero emission construction equipment and digitalisation and am particularly proud of the innovative drive that our group has shown in these fields. I am sure that the team will continue to live this spirit in the future and wish them, as well as the entire group, every success. Last but not least, I would like to thank all our customers and business partners for their loyalty and trust. I am convinced that they will continue to be in good hands with Wacker Neuson also in the future.”
Kurt Helletzgruber has been a member of the supervisory board since 2007 and previously held the position of chief financial officer at Neuson Kramer Baumaschinen prior to the merger with Wacker Construction Equipment. Matthias Schüppen takes over his role as chairman of the audit committee, a position Helletzgruber has held since 2010.
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