Former Porsche SE execs, including Wendelin Wiedeking, Holger Haerter, and now Anton Hunger, have been indicted for alleged stock manipulation during the failed takeover of Volkswagen. Prosecutors dropped charges against Ferdinand Piech and Wolfgang Porsche.
Former Porsche CEO Wendelin Wiedeking (left in the above photo) could potentially be facing some time in the slammer after all. The last we had heard, he and former Chief Financial Officer Holger Haerter (right) had avoided a trial in April due to a lack of evidence. However, an appeals court in Stuttgart has looked at the case again and overruled the earlier decision, finding that the executives should be tried for share manipulation during Porsche's failed attempt to take over Volkswagen in 20
Hedge fund managers have been suing Porsche for years now, alleging that the car company lied about its intentions during its failed attempt to take over Volkswagen, a gambit that caused them billion in losses. Over the same period, authorities in Stuttgart built a criminal case against former CEO Wendelin Wiedeking (above, left) and Chief Financial Officer Holger Härter (right), filing charges in December 2012. When those fund plaintiffs lost their most recent court case, one of the dimmin
Do you recall the failed efforts by Porsche to take over Volkswagen? According to a Bloomberg report, former Porsche CEO Wendelin Wiedeking (above) and ex-CFO Holger Haerter have finally been charged with market manipulation over the exercising of options as part of the German sportscar manufacturer's ill-fated attempt to take over the much larger VW. That failed bid eventually resulted in the reverse coming true – VW swallowing Porsche.
Three years after an oversize corporate appetite resulted in him departing the CEO's throne at Porsche, Wendelin Wiedeking is back in the hunger business having announced a chain of pizza and pasta restaurants called Vialino. The eatery business isn't new to the former Porsche boss, nor are business interests far from the automotive sector: the former Porsche boss made his first million in real estate before he was 30, owns a restaurant now, and still owns stakes in companies that make shoes amo
Wendelin Wiedeking sat at the helm of Porsche for 16 of the company's most successful years. Under Wiedeking's watch, Porsche blessed the world's roads with the Boxster, Cayman, Carrera GT, Cayenne and now the Panamera. According to Wiedeking's lawyers, he Porsche and Piech families thought that was enough to warrant a 140 million euros ($199 million) payment to get the successful leader to leave the company.
It was really just 35 words that announced the ends of two careers at Porsche: "In the last weeks Wiedeking and Härter have come to the conclusion, that the further strategic development of Porsche SE and Porsche AG is better off, if they are not on board as acting persons." And so, effective immediately, they aren't. The man who would be was king, Wendelin Wiedeking, and his majordomo CFO Holge Härter, have retired from Porsche with immediate effect.
If the rumored deal for Volkswagen to consume Porsche is indeed accurate, then there are only two things left: the shouting, and the sound of Porsche CEO Wendelin Wiedeking departing his post in a Brinks truck filled with €100 million ($141M USD). German newspaper Bild am Sonntag reported "it is now no longer a question of if, but of how Wendelin Wiedeking will step aside, and that he will clear his desk voluntarily in the coming week."
This executive cycle isn't uncommon, especially in Germany: CEO displays great leadership over time, then decides to do something daring, then gets caught in a series of unfortunate events, then gets a tarnished reputation, then departs the formerly high-flying company (see also: "Schrempp" and "Pischetsrieder"). Porsche CEO Wendelin Wiedeking is hoping to avoid that last phase, and his company has been fighting back rumors that his departure is imminent.
Daimler's Dieter Zetsche has called 2009 a "Darwin year" for the car business, with the weak and the lame being pulled down by larger forces. Surprisingly, Porsche was one of those businesses that nearly went under, and it has been looking for help almost anywhere it could get it. Reuters says that Germany's Manager Magazin recently reported that Porsche and Daimler held talks in May regarding Daimler taking a stake in either Porsche or VW in order to help Porsche balance its books.
Some analysts are wondering if Porsche isn't running itself more like the Blackstone Group than as an automaker. The option trades it used last year to take control of Volkswagen netted the German automaker €6.8 billion. The business of selling cars netted Porsche just €1 billion over the same period. And that's not all: Porsche made an additional €392 million trading shares in other companies on the German exchange.
Little guy Porsche is taking huge swings, and not just at the giant that is Volkswagen. Porsche head Wendelin Wiedeking had fierce Teutonic words for General Motors and Ford, and banks. His Rindfleisch – beef, that is – with U.S. automakers is that, through unsound practices, they have thrown absolutely everything into turmoil. In the words of the Guardian, in fact, they have driven "the industry to the brink of ruin."
There's no record of VW actually asking for one, but in case they wanted a seat on Porsche's management board, Porsche has said, "Uh, nein." That's the word from Porsche Automobil CFO Holger Härter, who forms half of the management board. The other half is Porsche CEO Wendelin Wiedeking. Nor will the company's charter and co-determination agreements be altered. He did, however, open the door to adding more members in the future.
According to our friends over at Motor Authority, Porsche exec Wendelin Wiedeking has officially denied the development of a cute 'ute designed to slot in below the Cayenne. This news is contrary to last month's report from Autobild that Porsche intended to share a platform with the upcoming Audi A5 and Volkswagen Tiguan, dubbing the stillborn model the "Roxster." This most recent news confirms another story reported back in May.
Is Volkswagen about to shed some supercars from its stable? It could be the case, if statements by Porsche boss/VW supervisory board member, Wendelin Wiedeking, are taken seriously. When asked about the future Bugatti and Lamborghini within the Volkswagen Group, Wiedeking is quoted as saying "no toys anymore." Cash from the sale of these two exotic makers could help VW work on resurrecting restructuring its core Volkswagen brand, which would allow VW to reclaim its position as a true global play
Porsches may be getting cleaner, and even adding hybrids to their lineup, but according to CEO Wendelin Wiedeking, there are limits to what they can do. In a German newspaper interview, over the weekend he was highly critical of new EU proposals to require all cars to emit less than 130g/km of CO2. He stated the Cayenne hybrid will get fuel economy up to 26.1 mpg, but the new CO2 standard would require 39.2mpg and that apparently just isn't realistic for Porsche or other luxury carmakers. If the