Incoming EADS chief urges 'calm' in leadership feud

22nd December 2004, Comments 0 comments

FRANKFURT, Dec 22 (AFP) - The incoming German co-chairman of the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company, Thomas Enders, urged his French counterpart, Noel Forgeard, to order Wednesday, calling for "calm" and "discretion" in the politically sensitive debate about the leadership of EADS.

FRANKFURT, Dec 22 (AFP) - The incoming German co-chairman of the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company, Thomas Enders, urged his French counterpart, Noel Forgeard, to order Wednesday, calling for "calm" and "discretion" in the politically sensitive debate about the leadership of EADS.

"All important questions will be decided within the group and not in public," Enders told the daily Die Welt in an interview.

"Noel Forgeard and I will prepare these decisions. And I assume that we will do so with the necessary calm and discretion. We've got plenty of time."

Forgeard and Enders have both been nominated to take over the running of EADS next July when the current co-chairmen, Rainer Hertrich and Philippe Camus, step down.

But Forgeard, currently head of EADS' Airbus unit, has been very vocal in arguing for the current system of dual leadership to be abolished and for EADS to be headed by a single chairman.

And in a newspaper interview on Monday, the Airbus chief detailed his strategy for running EADS without consulting his German co-chairman and long before he actually takes up his position.

The possible acquisition of French defence technology group Thales by EADS would be back "on the agenda in 2005", Forgeard proclaimed.

And he also suggested that the French government should eventually sell its stake in EADS.

There have been strong objections in Germany to a merger of EADS and Thales, because it would give France a bigger weighting in the shareholder structure of a merged group.

Enders is seen as represent Germany's interests within EADS, because he is a close ally of Juergen Schrempp, the head of German-US auto giant DaimlerChrysler which holds a 30.07-percent stake in EADS.

Enders told Die Welt that the success of EADS lay in its "European cultural diversity."

© AFP

Subject: French News

0 Comments To This Article