The troubled Fresenius Group does not come to rest: Carla Kriwet is stepping down as CEO of the dialysis subsidiary Fresenius Medical Care (FMC) with immediate effect after only two months. She is leaving FMC "at her own request and by mutual agreement due to strategic differences," said the Dax company late Monday evening in Bad Homburg.
Chief Financial Officer Helen Giza moves seamlessly to the top post. The 54-year-old is to remain chief financial officer until the successor has been clarified.
The health and clinic group Fresenius and its dialysis subsidiary FMC are in a permanent crisis. After a series of profit warnings and the stock market crash, there was only a double change in leadership at the beginning of October: the hapless Fresenius boss Stephan Sturm was followed by the former Siemens manager Michael Sen. At FMC, Kriwet replaced Rice Powell early due to problems in the USA who retired. The 51-year-old Kriwet, who came from the Bosch subsidiary BSH Hausgeräte, announced a plan in October to tackle the problems at FMC. The doctor of business administration was considered assertive and experienced in restructuring.
All shops under scrutiny
There are now said to have been disagreements about the course with Fresenius boss Sen. Fresenius Medical Care must "focus even more on the operational turnaround, further improve corporate performance and concentrate on its core," Sen said in a statement. The manager had already announced in the past few months that all Fresenius businesses would be put to the test and promised a high speed in the restructuring of the group.
Kriwet's environment said on Tuesday that she had planned a thorough restructuring of FMC, but did not get enough money and time for it. The parent company was concerned with quick success. Priorities have also shifted with the change in leadership from Sturm to Sen.
Fresenius has been suffering from the consequences of the corona pandemic for a long time, which first hit the clinic subsidiary Helios and most recently FMC. Many hemodialysis patients continue to die there from Corona. In addition, FMC are suffering from a shortage of nursing staff in the USA and rising wages and material costs. Shortly after Kriwet took office in October, FMC had to lower its profit forecast for the second time in three months, forcing Fresenius to correct its targets.
Up to 750 jobs in Germany affected
The new FMC boss Helen Giza has been working in the group since 2019, which operates more than 4,100 dialysis centers worldwide and contributed almost half of Fresenius sales in 2021 with around 17.6 billion euros. At FMC, Giza was also responsible for realigning the group to a leaner structure. In the course of this, FMC announced in autumn 2021 that it would cut 5,000 jobs worldwide, around 500 to 750 of them in Germany. Details are still pending.
However, the reorganization in the Fresenius Group should not be over yet. Fresenius recently confirmed that it had been in contact with the US hedge fund Elliott. According to reports, he could insist on splitting up the complex group structure with the divisions dialysis, liquid medicines, clinics and project business.