Bitterfeld/ Wolfen, 17 June 2009 –The Supervisory Board of Q-Cells SE today agreed to CFO Dr. Hartmut Schüning's request for the premature termination of his Executive Board contract and announced a search process to find a replacement that is underway. In the interim, the supervisory appointed Dr. Nedim Cen as his successor.
Schüning headed the company’s financial department for over five years. Under his direction, significant milestones were set to finance the growth of the company, which is now the world's largest manufacturer of solar cells. These milestones include the successful IPO in 2005, a series of capital measures and, most recently, a convertible bond of the amount of 250 million euros. With its bond issue and sale of shares in REC Group, Q-Cells has created a solid foundation for further growth in challenging financial market conditions.
“As CFO and Board Member responsible for HR, and with his great personality, Dr. Schüning has considerably shaped our company over the past years. Following one of the most successful IPOs in the sector, we are now an important company in the German technology index TecDax. As an individual and one of the most influential architects of our corporate culture, Dr. Schüning has made a lasting mark on our organisation. We are particularly grateful to him for his total commitment to achieving a strong financial base for Q-Cells, in what are trying times for the entire industry. Now that this task has been completed, the Annual General Meeting is a good time for both him and the company to move on to the next step”, says Anton Milner, CEO of QCells SE.
Milner continues: "Particularly in a period in which the market and the company are undergoing drastic changes, we are extremely pleased to have secured in Dr. Cen the talents of an experienced financial professional. His expertise will give us an important impetus in our further development from a pure-play manufacturer into a photovoltaics group."
Dr. Cen, 43, an experienced financial expert, will join the team within the next few days to accompany Q-Cells in a new development phase. Up to 2008 he was CFO of the KION Group, a spin-off of Linde and the world's second-largest manufacturer of fork-lift trucks with head offices in Wiesbaden, Germany. Previously, Cen spent 15 years in management consulting and investment banking, with positions at Credit Suisse and McKinsey. He is currently Managing Director of Alvarez & Marsal in Munich, which specialises in financial consultancy and interim management. Dr. Cen will lead the finance and HR departments at Q-Cells until a new CFO is appointed. To ensure a smooth changeover, Dr. Schüning is also available to support the company in an advisory capacity.
Dr. Cen completes the five-strong management team led by CEO Milner. Gerhard Rauter is responsible for the core business, crystalline silicon technology. His colleague, Dr. Florian Holzapfel, is driving the development of new technologies, including the Q-Cells thin film portfolio. The appointment of Dr. Marko Schulz to the Executive Board in April 2009 reflects the considerably greater importance of sales for the overall success of the company.