deutsche bank chief josef ackermann steps down
Last Updated : GMT 12:34:34
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

Deutsche Bank chief Josef Ackermann steps down

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Deutsche Bank chief Josef Ackermann steps down

Berlin - AFP

Deutsche Bank chief Josef Ackermann officially stepped down on Thursday, ending a decade-long reign as head of Germany\'s biggest bank during which he repeatedly courted controversy. At the end of Deutsche Bank\'s annual shareholder meeting at Frankfurt\'s huge Messehalle exhibition hall, Swiss-born Ackermann, 64, hands over the reins to his two successors, Anshu Jain and Juergen Fitschen. While for many, Ackermann personifies the arrogance and greed of the banking sector, in his 10 years as chief executive, he succeeded in transforming Deutsche Bank into a truly global player. In addition, Ackermann successfully steered his bank through the 2008 global economic and financial crisis without any major mishaps when he also acted as unofficial advisor to Chancellor Angela Merkel and her then finance minister Peer Steinbrueck. With the eurozone crisis showing no signs of abating, the challenges facing Deutsche Bank, like the rest of the banking sector, are daunting. So it can hardly come as a surprise that Ackermann is being succeeded not just by one, but two chief executives. Jain, a 49-year-old British citizen of Indian origin, and the 63-year-old German Fitschen will press ahead with the internationalisation of Deutsche Bank without ignoring German sensibilities. They will also have to reassure shareholders, customers and markets. The backgrounds and personalities of the two men reflect those very different challenges facing the bank. Jain is a high-flying investment banker from London and, with no spoken German, very much personifies the international or \"Anglo-Saxon\" way of doing business. Fitschen, for his part, with his intimate knowledge of the German corridors of power will be responsible for reassuring and maintaining the confidence of the bank\'s major domestic clients. \"Here in Germany, Fitschen has an excellent reputation. He will do everything so that Deutsche Bank fulfils its role as financier of the German economy. In tandem with Jain, they should make a good team,\" said the head of the DIHK federation of German chambers of commerce, Hans Heinrich Driftmann. Together with Deutsche Bank\'s new supervisory board chief Paul Achleitner -- former chief financial officer of insurance giant Allianz -- the new leadership will also have to polish up the group\'s image, which has become somewhat tarnished in recent years by a string of different legal battles and perceptions that some of its areas of activity -- such as foodstuff speculation -- were not always ethically acceptable. \"Deutsche Bank has an impressive code of ethics, but there are serious questions about how it is implemented on a day-to-day basis,\" said Hans-Christoph Hirt, the head of the British investment bank Hermes, which represents Deutsche Bank shareholders, in a recent interview.

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