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Group Management Report

 

5. Organization and administration

The GfK Group has a matrix organization consisting of two globally responsible sectors, Consumer Experiences and Consumer Choices, with product responsibility, and six regions.

GfK SE functions as both the holding company and an operating unit. In Germany, the GfK Group’s network comprises the parent company as well as nine consolidated subsidiaries and one associated company, plus six nonconsolidated subsidiaries. Worldwide, GfK has 139 consolidated subsidiaries and 10 associated companies, 4 minority interests and 29 nonconsolidated subsidiaries. The Group headquarters are in Nuremberg, Germany. In 2015, GfK further optimized its structure and reduced the number of companies.

5.1 Management Board

The Management Board of GfK SE consisted of four members in 2015. The Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Matthias Hartmann, is responsible for the corporate functions Strategy and Innovation, IT (Strategy, Enterprise Applications, Infrastructure), Human Resources (including Executive Development and Compensation), Integrity, Compliance and Intellectual Property, Internal Audit, Investor Relations, and Marketing and Communications.

The Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Christian Diedrich, is responsible for the corporate functions Finance (Accounting, Controlling, Finance IT), Finance Administration (Corporate Shareholder Management, Investment Controlling, Risk Management, Mergers and Acquisitions, Tax), Treasury, Legal, Central Services, Procurement, and Sector Finance. In accordance with the code of procedure rules effective as of January 1, 2016, the corporate functions for which the CFO is responsible will be reorganized and renamed as Corporate Finance, Corporate Development, Group Controlling, Treasury, Legal, Central Services, Procurement, and Sector Finance. Regional Finance was also expanded.  

Strategic and operational management of the two sectors was the responsibility of the Management Board members (Chief Operating Officers, COOs) Debra A. Pruent for the Consumer Experiences sector and Dr. Gerhard Hausruckinger for the Consumer Choices sector.

Debra A. Pruent decided not to extend her contract, which was due to expire at the end of 2015. Therefore, at its session of September 11, 2015, the Supervisory Board decided to implement the following changes in 2016:

The previous executive function for the management of the strategy and operation of both sectors will bear the title of Chief Commercial Officer as of January 1, 2016. As of January 1, 2016, the Management Board of GfK SE will consist of five members.

The Supervisory Board appointed David Krajicek to the Management Board to succeed Debra A. Pruent as Chief Commercial Officer (CCO) Consumer Experiences, effective as of January 1, 2016. Mr. Krajicek was responsible for the Consumer Experiences business in North America in his role as Regional Chief Operating Officer (Regional COO).

In order to further improve the use of synergies across the sectors, the executive function of Chief Operations Officer was created, which will be responsible for all the local and global production activities of GfK. Through this position, GfK wants to increase the productivity of its operations by improving automated processes, the use of economies of scale and efficiency. Alessandra Cama was appointed to the Management Board for this new position, effective as of January 1, 2016. Ms. Cama was previously responsible for the Consumer Choices business in the Asia and the Pacific region as Regional Chief Operating Officer (Regional COO).

Dr. Gerhard Hausruckinger will continue to be responsible for the Consumer Choices sector in his role as Chief Commercial Officer.

5.2 Administration

The corporate functions Corporate Finance, Group Controlling, Corporate Development, Legal, Treasury, Integrity, Compliance and Intellectual Property, Human Resources, Central Services, Procurement, Marketing and Communications and Investor Relations are responsible for deciding on policy across the Group in their respective fields of work.

General