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Opinion

Deutsche appoints a non-banker and non-German as chairman

Alexander Wynaendts has worked in insurance for a quarter of a century, but is not a stranger to investment banking.

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Late on Friday, Deutsche Bank finally named a successor to Paul Achleitner as chairman of its supervisory board. Alexander Wynaendts, former chief executive of Dutch insurer Aegon, will – barring any extraordinary hitch – take up the role at the bank’s annual general meeting on May 19, 2022.

By then it will be two years since Achleitner, an Austrian investment banker who arrived in May 2012 with the reputation of being Germany’s great M&A dealmaker, announced he would be stepping down.

Not even his greatest fan would call Achleitner’s tenure a success, dogged as it has been with mistaken appointments first to maintain and then to re-engineer the bank after the great financial crisis and only partially redeemed by progress since 2019 under his third chief executive, Christian Sewing.

Wynaendts understands German well enough to know who will really run Deutsche once Achleitner departs

It has taken so long for the nominations committee, led by Mayree Clark – a US former investment banker at Morgan Stanley – to find a replacement that rumours have spread that nobody wanted the position.

Clark has named not only a non-banker but also a non-German.


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