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Published: 30 January 2017      

Shock resignation at DB AG

Dr Rudiger Grube
Dr Rüdiger Grube, Chairman of DB AG, has taken the Advisory Board by surprise by resigning from his contract, which is valid until the end of 2017

Dr Grube (65), an engineer by training, joined the federal state railways DB AG in 2009 after many decades on the Board of Daimler AG. A dispute over his new contract and emoluments (€900,000 salary plus around €500,000 in bonuses) has been pending, and the Board wanted to give him only a new two-year contract instead of three years as requested by Dr Grube.

He has resigned today (30th January 2017) with immediate effect.

Relations between Dr Grube and the federal Minister for Transport Dr Alexander Dobrindt have been strained, with Berlin taking the view that DB AG's financial results are not good enough, despite a major shake-up less than two years ago. Berlin also argues that DB needs to do more to improve pinctuality and prioritise fitting WLAN to all ICE (inter-city express) trains.

DB Cargo AG has been struggling - last October it announced it would be making almost 900 redundancies in the UK – and some passenger bus franchises have been a drain. All the same, Dr Grube's resignation has come as a surprise.

Former minister Roland Profalla, who joined DB AG just two years ago, will not take over the post. Instead Board member and CFO Dr Richard Lutz has been appointed as interim Chairman.

Here is a brief round-up of recent appointments known to WordCargo News.

  • Ann Begeman, who is currently serving a second, five-year term on the US Surface Transportation Board, has been appointed acting chair of the STB by President Trump. (Source: NITL)
  • P&O Ferrymasters has promoted Trailer Operations General Manager Mark Timmermans to the company board with effect from 1st February, in the newly created post of Trailer Director, based in Rotterdam Europoort. The new role frees Intermodal Director Wim Blomme to concentrate on the company's expanding intermodal activity.
  • Bremen, Germany: Since December 2016, Harald Schefft has been the Director of Global Contract Logistics at Röhlig, the owner-run provider of logistics services. The post is based in Bremen and he reports to Hylton Gray, the CEO for the core business of air and sea freight and for the areas of project and contract logistics, who is based in South Africa.
  • Maritime event week Nor-Shipping has recruited Sofia Fürstenberg, formerly Innovation Portfolio Manager with Maersk Maritime Technology, to head up its Disruptive Sustainability concept, which will take up the whole of Hall A at Nor-Shipping 2017, taking place in Oslo and Lillestrøm from 30 May to 2 June.
  • Hiab, part of Cargotec, has appointed Scott Hall as Senior Vice President, Sales & Services as of 24th January 2017. His most recent position was President and CEO of Volvo Rents.
  • Jersey City, NJ, USA: Sphere Technology Solutions, a woman-owned Cybersecurity firm, has appointed Michael Mihalik as Chief Information Security Officer.
  • David Goring-Thomas has joined the Management Board of transport finance specialist DVB with responsibility for the bank's aviation and land transport divisions, as well as loan syndication and relations with other financial institutions.

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