Hellmann has successfully mastered the past years of restructuring and repositioning. Under the leadership of restructuring specialist Dr. Thomas Knecht as CEO and CRO as well as Jost Hellmann as CCO, the Group executed comprehensive restructuring program, which was implemented consistently and successfully. Its key measures were the establishment of three business units with clearly defined strategic objectives, the change of legal form to an SE and an extremely comprehensive structural, financial and performance-related realignment of the global Hellmann Group. In addition, the Group was successfully refinanced in a structured process resulting in a multi-year loan agreement with a stable banking syndicate. Already in the previous year, the Group was able to achieve clearly positive growth in consolidated sales of 8% to EUR 2.5 billion and in EBT of 37% to EUR 22.2 million. Overall, the Group generated total sales of over EUR 3.2 billion (+ 7% compared to the previous year).
At the end of the restructuring phase, Dr. Knecht will now hand over the management of the Hellmann Group at short notice and in agreement with the Supervisory Board, thus paving the way for a management team of industry experts. On December 1, 2018 Reiner Heiken will take over the position as CEO of Hellmann in order promote the further successful development of the company. The aim is to advance the industrial growth phase as one of the largest privately owned logistics companies. Reiner Heiken is a very experienced manager and an expert in all logistics sectors from air and sea freight, contract logistics to rail and road transport. The graduated navigator has already successfully proven this in his management positions at Kühne + Nagel and most recently at Schenker with more than twenty years of professional experience.
With the arrival of Heiken at Hellmann, the appointment of a new Management Board has been successfully completed. Dr. Michael Noth (formerly CFO of Nordzucker AG) was appointed to the CFO position on August 1, 2018. Jost Hellmann will resign from his position as Chief Commercial Officer at the end of the year due to his age.
As a result, Hellmann Worldwide Logistics will be managed from the beginning of 2019 by a management board consisting exclusively of external managers. However, the global logistics company continues to take benefit of the full support of the two family representatives Jost and Klaus Hellmann. The two shareholders will each continue to be represented directly or indirectly with one vote on the Supervisory Board, but have also brought a great expertise for the successful strategic development of the Group into the company with five external supervisory board members under the leadership of the former Schenker CEO, Dr. Thomas Lieb.
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