Friday, August 27, 2021
emissions scandal not over
Winterkorn threatens trouble with SDK lawsuit
In the VW emissions scandal, former CEO Winterkorn and former Audi boss Stadler get down quite lightly – they have to forfeit millions in bonuses, but insurance will cover the main losses. The investor community wants another action against the SDK manager.
Legal resistance is building against a settlement settled by VW shareholders in the diesel scandal with former CEO Martin Winterkorn and ex-Audi boss Rupert Stadler. The Schutzgemeinschaft der Kapitalanleger (SdK) is opposing the resolutions of the general meeting and, to the best of its knowledge, has filed a lawsuit with the Hannover regional court, as announced by the investors’ union.
The SDK complains that with comparisons to two former top managers, Volkswagen wanted to draw a line under civil liability of board and supervisory board members in the millions of exhaust gas manipulation scandals, although the exact damage is not yet estimated. The facts have not been conclusively determined, nor can it be predicted what sanctions will be imposed on Volkswagen and its former board members in the United States.
The SDK also criticizes the fact that Winterkorn and Stadler were asked to pay, but largely because they did not receive any outstanding bonuses. At its meeting in July, shareholders approved a negotiated settlement with a large majority, along with Winterkorn, Stadler and two other ex-board members. Accordingly, Winterkorn pays 11.2 million euros, Stadler accounts for 4.1 million. EUR 270 million flows through liability insurance (D&O) that Volkswagen has taken out for management.
More than 90 percent of the common shares are held by the family comprising Porsche SE, the State of Lower Saxony and the Emirate of Qatar. The processing of the emissions scandal has cost the Wolfsburg-based car company more than €32 billion so far. VW’s main owner, the Porsche SE, is also facing a shareholder lawsuit in connection with the diesel scandal in the United States.
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