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Daimler Chairman Up for Another Term

Under pressure to slash costs.

by on Mar.03, 2011

Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche with Chairman Manfred Bischoff admire the maker's new E-Class.

Dr. Manfred Bischoff is set for another term as chairman of Daimler AG.  But while he has won the support of the maker’s all-powerful Supervisory Board, Bischoff faces some tough challenges, over the next five years, as the German maker struggles to bring rising costs under control.

The German executive must still win a vote by stockholders during Daimler’s annual meeting in April, but will once again be proposed as candidate for the Chair of the Supervisory Board, which is responsible for overseeing the work of Daimler’s board of management.  That usually translates into an overwhelming vote in favor of senior management’s candidate.

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But it could be a case of be careful what you wish for.  Despite the major league improvement in earnings the company’s CEO Dieter Zetsche reported last month, Daimler is facing extensive cost pressures that it is struggling to overcome. (Click here for more on that story.) The company is also struggling with its long-troubled Smart car operation — and last month decided to consolidate that unit with flagship Mercedes-Benz, in the process pulling the U.S. Smart car franchise from entrepreneur Roger Penske.