WITTENSTEIN AG: Professor Dieter Spath to take over as President on October 1, 2013

Dr. Manfred Wittenstein, who celebrated his seventieth birthday last year, yesterday presented Professor Dieter Spath, the favoured candidate, as his successor as President of WITTENSTEIN AG. Professor Spath is scheduled to take up his duties at WITTENSTEIN on October 1, 2013. Dr. Wittenstein will continue to make an active contribution to the company's wellbeing beyond the necessary transitional period.

During the last few months an intensive search has taken place for a worthy successor to Dr. Manfred Wittenstein. The result is a compelling choice: on October 1, 2013, Professor Dieter Spath, for many years Head of the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering (Fraunhofer IAO), will take over from Dr. Wittenstein as President of WITTENSTEIN AG.

Professor Spath studied Mechanical Engineering, specializing in manufacturing systems and production engineering. Following a successful career in industry – amongst other things as Managing Director of the KASTO Group, where he masterminded groundbreaking developments and made the company fit for the future in a difficult environment – his biography as a research scientist has been no less impressive. He has been Head of Fraunhofer IAO since 2002. Professor Spath's ability to make scientific knowledge meaningful and workable in practice, which goes hand in hand with the immense practical relevance of his academic work, has given him a reputation as a highly interconnected expert who is widely respected and greatly in demand as an authority on numerous economic, scientific, political and sociological issues. Dr. Manfred Wittenstein: "I am delighted that Professor Dieter Spath has agreed to take over the helm at WITTENSTEIN. He is an outstanding personality who embodies our requirements profile better than anyone else I know."

WITTENSTEIN AG, Dr. Manfred Wittenstein and Professor Dieter Spath's acquaintance with one another goes back a long time and is the outcome of a series of joint projects and personal encounters.

"Professor Spath has inspired us for many years now with his extraordinary expertise and deeply honourable nature. This admiration has gradually developed into a profound and very personal relationship of trust which ultimately tipped the scales – for both sides. With his knowledge, his experience and his inimitable human approach, Professor Spath will undoubtedly make an extremely valuable contribution to the realization of our corporate vision by pushing ahead with the evolution of the Group as a whole", said Dr. Wittenstein.

Dr. Wittenstein will continue to be involved in the company in the future, though his role there will undergo a progressive transformation. "I will still be just as dedicated to the WITTENSTEIN cause as ever. Over the next few months – both before and after October 1, 2013 – I plan to get together with Professor Spath to formulate a clear definition of my new role, in which I hope to promote the well-being of the company and all my staff. I remain passionately committed in my responsibility", Dr. Wittenstein concluded.