Tata Steel today announces that, with effect from October 1 2010, Kirby Adams will hand over responsibility for the leadership of Tata Steel Europe to Dr Karl-Ulrich Köhler, who will become Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer.
Mr Adams has decided to step down from his executive roles and return to Australia, having successfully initiated a restructuring of the company and restored profitability. He will remain available to Tata Steel in an advisory capacity.
Dr Köhler, 54, was appointed Chief Operating Officer in February 2010 and is working closely with Mr Adams in implementing a new strategy and business model to enable Tata Steel Europe to compete more effectively in a challenging steel industry.
Prior to joining Tata Steel Europe, Dr Köhler worked during his 30-year steel industry career at the companies that today comprise ThyssenKrupp Steel, where he was most recently Chairman of the Executive Board and a Member of the Executive Board of the parent company, ThyssenKrupp AG. Until October 2009 he was President of Eurofer, the European steelmaking federation. He has a wealth of knowledge and experience of steelmaking in Europe, as well as of the European steel supply chain and customer base. Dr Köhler is already a board member of Tata Steel Europe and he will join the board of the parent company, Tata Steel Ltd later this year.
Mr Adams said: “I am very pleased that Karl, whom I have known for many years, is now taking on this role and I wish him every success. I have spent the past 15 months undertaking a major review of the operations during a time of unprecedented difficulty in the European steel industry. The results of this review are now being implemented through the ‘One Company’ and ‘Customer First’ initiatives and I am proud that we have moved from loss-making to profitability.
“We are now making great progress and Karl and I will continue to work closely over the next three months, making October an ideal time for him to take over the reins.”
Dr Köhler said: “I am delighted to accept the position of Chief Executive and to have the opportunity to carry through the strategy initiated by Kirby and our team. We are becoming a much more internationally competitive business and by living the ‘Customer First’ philosophy we are able to offer more innovative and differentiated products and services. I believe that thanks to these changes, the company has an exciting future.”
Ratan Tata, Chairman of Tata Steel, said: “In his time as Chief Executive of Tata Steel Europe, Kirby has effected a major turnaround of the business and he leaves the company very well placed for the future. We thank him for his contribution and look forward to making further progress under Karl’s leadership.”
Attachments: CV of Dr Karl-Ulrich Köhler
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Notes to Editors:
Tata Steel is one of the world’s top ten steel producers. With its Corus subsidiary, the combined enterprise has an aggregate crude steel capacity of more than 28 million tonnes and approximately 80,000 employees across four continents.
Corus (Tata Steel Europe) is Europe's second largest steel producer. With main steelmaking operations primarily in the UK and the Netherlands, Corus supplies steel and related services to the construction, automotive, packaging, mechanical engineering and other markets worldwide.
CV of Dr Karl-Ulrich Köhler
Dr Karl-Ulrich Köhler joined Tata Steel Europe as Chief Operating Officer on 1 February 2010.
Born in Baden-Württemberg, Germany, Dr Köhler studied metallurgy at Clausthal University of Technology, where he gained his doctorate in 1988. In 2005 he was awarded an honorary professorship in flat steel product technology by Freiberg University. Dr Köhler is a former member of the executive committee of the World Steel Association and Vice Chairman of VDEh, the German Iron and Steel Institute.
He has worked during his 30-year steel industry career at the companies that today comprise ThyssenKrupp Steel, where he was most recently Chairman of the Executive Board and a Member of the Board of the parent company, ThyssenKrupp AG. Until October 2009 he was President of Eurofer, the European steelmaking federation. He has a wealth of knowledge and experience of steelmaking in Europe, as well as of the European steel supply chain and customer base.
Dr Köhler is married with four children.