Driver of the group: Herbert Diess
Photo: MATTHIAS RIETSCHEL / REUTERS
Despite a power struggle with the works council, Herbert Diess can apparently remain Volkswagen boss.
"You are heading for a solution," it said from supervisory board circles to SPIEGEL.
"It tends to mean that Diess remains CEO." However, an official decision has not yet been made.
Because of the conflict with the employee representatives, the future of the 63-year-old had been hanging by a thread in the past few weeks.
The Reuters news agency reported on it first.
As SPIEGEL already reported, Diess is to hand over areas of responsibility to the head of the core brand VW, Ralf Brandstätter.
This solution would suit the works council: The employee representatives demand "reliable partners" like Brandstätter with whom they can coordinate operational issues.
Diess' role, on the other hand, would be reduced more to representative and strategic functions.
Brandstätter could be promoted to the group's board of directors, just like chief legal counsel Manfred Döss, who is to inherit the previous legal director Hiltrud Werner.
Döss is internally regarded as a critic of Diess.
However, insiders emphasize that his rise does not serve to further restrict Diess.
Such a solution had been on the horizon for weeks.
However, the conclusion of the compromise had been delayed again and again - which further fueled speculation about Diess' early departure.
Supervisory board chairman Hans Dieter Pötsch had previously mediated in countless conversations between the fronts.
The dispute broke out at the end of September when business games by Diess for a possible reduction of 30,000 jobs in Germany became known.
The works council saw this as a massive breach of trust.
The state of Lower Saxony, which has a 20 percent stake in Volkswagen, was also appalled.
Contract extended in July
It was only in July that the owners extended Diess' contract for the third time and confirmed his course of accelerating the transformation into a technology provider modeled on the US electric car manufacturer Tesla.
From corporate circles it was also said that Pötsch had pressed for an agreement in the Personnel Diess before the decisive supervisory board meeting on Thursday.
Then the supervisory body should approve the investment planning for the next five years.
On Wednesday, the leadership circle of the supervisory board is to prepare the meeting.
sh / dab / Reuters