MANNHEIM (dpa-AFX) – The industrial service provider Bilfinger (Bilfinger SE) has to look for a new boss. Tom Blades has resigned his mandate as CEO with immediate effect, the company announced on Tuesday evening in Mannheim. CFO Christina Johansson will temporarily take over his duties while retaining her current functions.
The company’s Supervisory Board is dealing with the question of long-term succession and will make a final decision on this in the coming months.
The share lost more than 2 percent to 28.54 euros. However, the value of the paper had almost doubled since the end of October.
The manager’s wish not to extend his contract beyond June 30, 2021 is made for personal reasons and against the background of reaching the age of 65.
The Brit Blades had been at the top of Bilfinger since mid-2016 and had heralded a profound restructuring after the sale of the silverware, real estate services. Since then, the group has concentrated on two business areas and parted with loss-making businesses. Blades also introduced an extensive compliance and control system, as Bilfinger was under observation by the US Department of Justice until the end of 2018, among other things because of a corruption case by its former daughter Julius Berger in Nigeria.
Last year, Bilfinger was finally able to put two old burdens on file. In the dispute over compensation, the company agreed with former board members, including the former Hessian Prime Minister Roland Koch, on the payment of almost 17 million euros. In principle, the Supervisory Board had accused all Executive Board members who held office between 2006 and 2015 but joined the body before 2015, breaches of duty. In addition, Bilfinger reached a settlement with the city of Cologne in connection with the collapse of the city archives in 2009 during the construction of a subway, in which the Mannheimers were involved. Bilfinger pays 200 million euros, which are fully covered by the insurers.
The operating result adjusted for special items (Ebita) should decrease significantly, but still remain positive. In 2019, Bilfinger had adjusted earnings before interest, taxes and goodwill amortization of EUR 104 million. However, the company is assuming a loss in consolidated earnings.
The Management Board had already canceled its original outlook for the current year in February. In 2021 sales and earnings are expected to “improve significantly”.
In the meantime, the industrial service provider said goodbye to the Nord Stream 2 pipeline project, according to a report in the “Bild” newspaper. According to the newspaper on Tuesday, this emerges from the letters from the Mannheim company that it has received. With reference to the provisions of the “Protection of the European Energy Security Act”, all cooperations and contracts with Nord Stream 2 have been terminated.
The company did not comment on the report when asked by the dpa.
The order volume was more than 15 million euros. Bilfinger was also responsible for the construction of a heating center to preheat natural gas at the landing point in Lubmin. On Tuesday, the outgoing US government punished a company for the first time for participating in the construction of Nord Stream 2./mne/knd/mis