THE SUPERVISORY board of Germany’s Deutsche Bank yesterday moved to quell rumours of an acrimonious boardroom split, denying reports that chairman Clemens Boersig had launched a failed coup to grab the chief executive role when Josef Ackermann steps down.
Boersig was reported to have failed in an audacious bid to succeed Ackermann last month, after the bank’s supervisory board rejected his offer to take over.
Ackermann has instead postponed his retirement until 2013, sparking rumours of a power struggle at the top of the bank.
But the deputy head of the supervisory board Tilman Todenhoefer moved to reassure shareholders at the bank’s annual general meeting, insisting that Boersig had not acted improperly.
“The supervisory board considers the criticism of Dr. Boersig…to be completely unfounded,” he said. “He did not pursue personal objectives.”
Speaking at the AGM, Ackermann sought to soothe investors’ concerns about the bank’s future earnings, insisting that the bank was following the right strategy.
“We are confident that we will once again be able to present better revenue and profit figures to you in the future,” he said.
He added that the bank’s business model had “proven itself in the crisis,” but warned that the next year would still be a difficult one for the firm as the global economy struggles to emerge from recession.
Deutsche Bank moved back into the black for the first quarter of 2009, recording a profit of €1.2bn (£1bn) after booking its first annual loss in 50 years for 2008, of €5.7bn before tax.