Adrian von Hammerstein, the chief executive officer of Vodafone Group Plc (VOD)’s German cable acquisition Kabel Deutschland, will leave at the end of March and be replaced by his deputy Manuel Cubero.
Von Hammerstein, 60, became CEO at Germany’s largest cable operator in 2007 and oversaw the company’s initial public offering almost three years later. The cable operator’s share price more than quadrupled since the IPO. Vodafone completed its 7.5 billion-euro ($10.2 billion) purchase of Kabel Deutschland in October to strengthen its fixed-line offering in Europe’s biggest telecommunications market.
“We very much regret Dr. Adrian v. Hammerstein’s decision,” Vodafone’s German chief Jens Schulte-Bockum said in an e-mailed statement. “We are committed to continuing the successful growth story established by Kabel Deutschland under his leadership.”
Cubero, a 50-year-old who’s been at Kabel Deutschland since 2003 and is currently also its chief operating officer, will join the board of Vodafone Germany in von Hammerstein’s stead, Kabel Deutschland spokesman Marco Gassen said by phone. Gerhard Mack, the director of technical operations at the cable provider, will replace Cubero as COO in April, the company said.
Gassen and Vodafone Germany spokesman Kuzey Esener declined to comment on the reasons for von Hammerstein’s departure.
Separately, Vodafone, which holds almost 77 percent of the shares, offered 84.53 euros a share to minority shareholders as part of an agreement approved by Kabel Deutschland’s supervisory board today. The minority shareholders will also receive 3.77 euros a share every year from now on as compensation, Kabel Deutschland said in a separate statement.
The offer to minority shareholders, which include Elliott Management Corp. with an 11 percent stake, compares with 84.50 euros a share in Vodafone’s public takeover offer. Today’s agreement requires approval by Kabel Deutschland’s shareholders.
Kabel Deutschland fell 0.7 percent to 93.97 euros at 3:57 p.m. in Frankfurt trading. Vodafone added 0.6 percent to 234.95 pence in London.
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