Ex-banker and entrepreneur Harald Christ
Photo: Michael Kappeler / dpa
Federal Finance Minister Christian Lindner (FDP) wants to realign state control of Commerzbank in terms of personnel.
After it became known at the weekend that the former Bundesbank boss Jens Weidmann was to be elected chairman of the bank's supervisory board at the next general meeting at the end of May, according to SPIEGEL information, Lindner also wants to send a confidante with an FDP party card to the committee: the former banker Harold Christian.
He, too, is to be elected by the shareholders at the Annual General Meeting in May.
Commerzbank is still around 15 percent state-owned because the federal government saved it from collapse during the financial crisis.
For years there has been speculation as to whether the state could sell its shares again.
But Finance Minister Lindner doesn't seem to want to know anything about that at the moment.
The personal data rather indicate that he even wants to strengthen control by the federal government.
The Treasury Department and Christ himself declined to comment on the information when asked.
Initially, no comment was available from Commerzbank.
The 50-year-old Christ has held several high-ranking management positions in the financial sector in recent years – including at Postbank, the building society BHW and the insurance group Ergo.
Today he takes care of his strategy and communication consultancy Christ & Company Consulting full-time.
After more than 30 years in the SPD, the worker's son Christ joined the FDP in 2020.
Until April of this year he was the party's federal treasurer.
His relationship with FDP leader Lindner is considered close, but the enterprising businessman is also well connected to other parties.
He is also a member of the Ver.di service union – an unusual constellation for someone who is supposed to be a representative of the capital side on the supervisory board.
In addition to Christ, according to SPIEGEL information, Jutta Dönges could continue to sit on the Commerzbank supervisory board for the federal government – even though she resigned as managing director of the federal finance agency at the end of October.
In the finance agency, Dönges was responsible, among other things, for the Economic Stabilization Fund (WSF), which had saved large corporations such as Lufthansa with state money during the corona crisis.
Before joining the finance agency, Dönges worked for the investment bank Goldman Sachs and the German subsidiary of the Swedish bank SEB.