VW ousts CEO Herbert Diess, replaces him with Porsche boss

Volkswagen AG has ousted Herbert Diess (shown above), its chief executive officer and architect of the auto industry’s biggest electrification effort, after repeated clashes with labor unions chipped away at his support with key stakeholders.

Porsche boss Oliver Blume will succeed Diess within weeks, ending a four-year tenure in which Diess’ hard-nosed leadership style caused constant friction and undermined his effectiveness. Missteps on key projects including delays at VW’s software unit also contributed to the shakeup, people familiar with the matter said.

VW’s board is betting Blume will be a more collaborative and stable leader, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing private deliberations. He’ll remain the head of Porsche, which VW is trying to list late this year in what could be one of Europe’s biggest-ever initial public offerings.

Dr. Oliver Blume , new VW CEO.  Blume, 54, has been viewed as a potential successor to Diess for some time, though any changeover was seen as years away. Photo by PORSCHE AG / Marco Prosch


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