As of January 1, 2016, the existing Management Board functions for the strategic and operational management of the two sectors bear the title of Chief Commercial Officer. As of January 1, 2016, GfK SE’s Management Board consists of five members.
As Debra A. Pruent’s successor, the Supervisory Board appointed David Krajicek to the Management Board as Chief Commercial Officer (CCO) of Consumer Experiences, with effect from January 1, 2016. Mr. Krajicek was previously Regional Chief Operating Officer (Regional COO) responsible for the Consumer Experiences business in North America.
In order to make even more effective use of cross-sector synergies, GfK created the Management Board function of Chief Operations Officer (COO), which will be responsible for all of GfK’s local and global production activities. By establishing this role, GfK intends to increase productivity in operational business through further automation, by making use of scaling effects and by improving efficiency. Alessandra Cama was appointed to this new Management Board position with effect from January 1, 2016. Ms. Cama was previously Regional Chief Operating Officer (Regional COO) responsible for the Consumer Choices business in Asia and the Pacific.
Dr. Gerhard Hausruckinger continues to be responsible for the Consumer Choices sector in his role as Chief Commercial Officer.
On January 18, 2016, GfK Switzerland AG, of Hergiswil, Switzerland, sold its affiliated printing house, called the Print Center, as part of an asset deal. This transaction is in line with GfK’s strategic focus on its core business.
On February 4, 2016, GfK SE took over Netquest, a leading access panel provider with strong presence in Spain, Portugal and Latin America. The acquisition also includes the subsidiary Wakoopa, a leading provider of cross-device passive measurement technology.
On March 9, 2016, GfK sold its 50 percent shareholding in USEEDS GmbH, Berlin.
The bond which was placed by GfK SE in April 2011 with a term of five years will be repayable in April 2016. In order to fully refinance the payable bond, GfK SE has already taken out several bilateral forward bank loans amounting to € 70 million and bonded loans amounting to € 130 million with terms between 3 and 12 years. The payment dates of these financing instruments are in February and March 2016.
No other major events with a significant impact on the GfK Group have occurred since the balance sheet reporting date.