BMW’s boss Harald Krueger announced that he will not seek to extend his contract after its expiration on April 30, 2020, prompting the German carmaker to seek its successor in the following months.
Krueger said that he wishes to “pursue new professional endeavours and leverage my diverse international experience for new projects and ventures”.
“It has always been a true honour for me to work with this tremendous team and to set the BMW Group on a path towards a successful future during the most significant transformation of this industry,” he added.
The 53-year-old executive had reportedly lost the trust of the company’s board room for some time now, but it isn’t clear whether he chose to step down on his own or was pushed towards this decision. The official line is, of course, that it’s business as usual.
“Harald Krueger has demonstrated unwavering dedication to the BMW Group in all of the various positions he has held. I would like to express my sincere gratitude for his great personal commitment. I have complete respect and understanding for his decision and for his further plans,” said Dr Norbert Reithofer, Chairman of BMW’s Supervisory Board.
According to Reuters, Krueger’s potential successors include production chief Oliver Zipse, chief financial officer Nicolas Peter and R&D board member Klaus Froehlich.
Of the two, Zipse is considered the most likely to take the helms of BMW, according to a report from German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine, which cites company insiders.
BMW has declined to comment on speculations about their potential CEO candidates, only saying that the issue will be discussed at a supervisory board meeting on July 18.