Friday, July 26, 2013

Siemens Board to Meet This Weekend to Discuss Leadership (SI)

From yesterday's "This Can't be Good: "Siemens Warns on Profit Margin" (SI)":
The Siemens family own about 6% of the stock and may be ready to combine with the German institutional shareholders to shake things up in the CEO's office....
The U.S. traded ADR's recovered a bit today, up $2.46 to $106.59 after tanking $6.05 on Thursday.

From Bloomberg:
Siemens AG (SIE)’s supervisory board members will meet this weekend to discuss the leadership of Europe’s largest engineering company as investors and analysts question how long Chief Executive Officer Peter Loescher can keep his job.

Loescher, brought in in 2007 to clean up after the biggest corruption scandal in German history, yesterday vowed to fight on after cutting a profit forecast for the fifth time in his six-year tenure. By contrast, competitor General Electric Co. (GE) last week reported second-quarter profit that beat analyst estimates, helped by a record order backlog.

“I’m underweight on Siemens and am glad that I am,” said Carsten Hilck, a fund manager at Union Investment, which holds less than one percent of Siemens shares. The target cut “is not unexpected. This sort of thing can always happen at Siemens and it doesn’t seem to be getting any better.”

Austrian native Loescher, who joined Siemens from drugmaker Merck & Co. as the first CEO hired from outside the company, has presided over a failed push into environmentally friendly energy which led to spiraling costs, while writing down the value of acquisitions. Last year, he acknowledged that he had been slow to react to the economic downturn and the company on July 25 pinned the latest forecast cut on “lower market expectations.”

‘Hasn’t Delivered’
Loescher told Sueddeutsche Zeitung yesterday that he won’t resign and that his contract runs until 2017. Chief Financial Officer Joe Kaeser and industry division head Siegfried Russwurm are candidates to replace Loescher, the newspaper said, without saying where it got the information. A Siemens spokesman confirmed Loescher’s comments on staying put while declining to comment on speculation about his future.

“Loescher just hasn’t delivered, I can well imagine that he will go,” said Daniela Bergdolt of DSW, Germany’s largest association for private investors, and who represented one million shares at Siemens’s investor meeting, equivalent to 0.1 percent of the company’s shares. “The explanation is missing, that’s my issue. General Electric says it’s the most wonderful year that we can think of.”...MORE