- Shareholders to confirm appointment of former Telekom CFO in early-2021.
- Deutsche Telekom veteran to help steer business through period of transition.
Former Deutsche Telekom Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Thomas Dannenfeldt is in line to become Chairman of German consumer electronics retail group Ceconomy.
The former CFO — who served at Deutsche Telekom for 26 years before stepping down in mid-2018, citing personal reasons (Deutsche Telekomwatch, #71) — will join Ceconomy’s Supervisory Board in mid-February 2021, and is expected subsequently to take the Chairman’s spot from the outgoing Jürgen Fitschen.
Fitschen praised his likely successor’s “extensive experience” in digital transformation.
Dannenfeldt is also currently a Non-Executive Director at Nokia and sits on the Advisory Board at IT management consultancy axxessio.
Headquartered in Düsseldorf, Ceconomy — which has an expansive European footing — was born out of a demerger from Metro Group in 2017. It also operates Metro Group spin-off MediaMarktSaturn, which comprises German consumer electronics chains Media Markt and Saturn. Ceconomy is currently in the process of reorganising its business and operating model, pitched as a means of centralising and “harmonising” the Group’s component parts to make operations more cost-effective and customer-centric.
Gone, but not forgotten
Dannenfeldt spent his last five years at Deutsche Telekom as Group CFO, after replacing Timotheus Höttges when he stepped up to the Chief Executive (CEO) role.
Dannenfeldt looked at one point to be being groomed for the top job at Deutsche Telekom, but appeared to be damaged by misses on headline cost-cutting targets ahead of the Group’s last Capital Markets Day in 2018 (Deutsche Telekomwatch, #74). Since his departure, Höttges has on occasion called out Dannenfeldt for those shortfalls while praising incumbent CFO Christian Illek for “executing” on savings goals (Deutsche Telekomwatch, #71 and #93).
Dannenfeldt’s exit came as Höttges was handed a five-year extension to his CEO contract (Deutsche Telekomwatch, #71).