In order to reflect its systematic transformation into an international, digital media enterprise and the investments it has made in digital business models in recent years, Ringier AG is modfiying the structure of its Group Executive Board (GEB).
With effect from October 1, 2017, the Ringier AG Group Executive Board will be focused on the Group’s two central business areas, Publishing and Marketplaces. Its future membership will comprise:
Marc Walder, CEO
Ralph Büchi, COO Ringier AG, Publishing
Robin Lingg, Marketplaces
Annabella Bassler, CFO
Xiaoqun Clever, Chief Technology & Data Officer
Alexander Theobald, COO Switzerland and Managing Director Blick Group
As Marc Walder, Ringier AG’s CEO, explains, “This new structure will enable us to concentrate our energies even more intensively on the two main areas of our business operations, Publishing and Marketplaces, where we plan to achieve further growth. The markets, technology and business models in both these areas continue to experience rapid change. In adopting this new organisational structure we are positioning ourselves to meet the challenges that these developments will present.”
The Publishing business managed by Ralph Büchi will continue to encompass Ringier Axel Springer Switzerland AG and Ringier Axel Springer Media AG. On March 1, 2018, Büchi will also assume management responsibility for Ringier’s Publishing businesses in Africa and Asia.
Robin Lingg will be responsible for the Ringier Group’s digital marketplaces, including Jobcloud AG and Scout24 Schweiz AG. He will remain CEO of Ringier Africa and Asia until March 1, 2018.
As CEO of Ringier Digital since 2011, Thomas Kaiser has played a key role in the extremely successful development of Ringier’s marketplaces and e-commerce portfolio. He will now be taking on a new entrepreneurial assignment involving the businesses initiated two years ago through Ringier Digital Ventures. The formal nature of his future role requires him to relinquish his GEB position.
In the words of Marc Walder, “Thomas Kaiser and the Ventures team have built up a very promising business which now comprises no fewer than twelve start-up investments. Inspired by his passion, he will now concentrate his efforts on these. My heartfelt thanks go to him for the commitment he has already demonstrated to Ringier and will, I am sure, continue to demonstrate in the years ahead.”
Personnel changes in Ringier AG’s Board of Directors
In addition to the reorganisation of the Group Executive Board, the composition of Ringier AG’s Board of Directors will also change. Martin Werfeli, 61, and Jan O. Frøshaug, 74, are leaving the Ringier Board.
Martin Werfeli has worked for Ringier in a variety of roles for the last 40 years. Initially joining the company in 1977, he held a number of positions in financial accounting before being appointed Head of Group Finance and a member of the Group Executive Board in 1996. In 2003, he was nominated Chairman of the Group Executive Board. He relinquished executive management of Ringier AG in 2009, when the joined the Ringier AG Board of Directors.
Martin Werfeli is stepping down from the Ringier AG Board. He is also relinquishing his seat on the Board of the newspaper printing company Ringier Print Adligenswil.
Martin Werfeli will remain Chairman of the Board of Directors of Swissprinters AG. He will also continue in his role as Vice Chairman of the Ringier AG pension fund and the Hans Ringier Foundation. In addition, he will continue to serve as an advisor to the Ringier family, where his duties include membership of the Annette Ringier Foundation.
In the words of Michael Ringier, Ringier AG’s Publisher and the Chairman of its Board of Directors, expressed his appreciation as follows, “Martin Werfeli has served Ringier for 40 years and has made a significant contribution to our success. As our CEO for a number of years and most recently as a member of our Board of Directors he has steered the course our company has taken. I am deeply grateful to him for the commitment he has already shown to Ringier and for his willingness to continue to serve the company in a variety of roles in the future.”
Jan O. Frøshaug, 74, is also relinquishing his seat on the Ringier AG Board of Directors. Born in Norway, he has been a Ringier Board member since 1995. Frøshaug was COO of Great Nordic, a listed international telecoms group, for a total of 20 years. He was also CEO of the Danish media group Egmont. Frøshaug also worked in the private equity sector for a number of years and currently holds a number of board and advisory roles with several European companies.
In the words of Michael Ringier, “I would like to thank Jan O. Frøshaug for the valuable expertise and expert knowledge he has contributed to our Board over the last 20 years. We wish him all the best.”
Ringier AG, Corporate Communications