The Board of Management and Supervisory Board of Daimler AG (ticker symbol DAI) have given the go-ahead for the company’s historic realignment and the ongoing roadmap. After the planned spin-off of Daimler Truck by the end of this year the shareholders of Daimler AG will hold a 65% stake in the new Daimler Truck Holding AG, which will then be listed on the stock exchange as an independent company. Daimler shareholders are to receive one additional share in Daimler Truck Holding AG, the global market leader for commercial vehicles, for every two shares they hold in Daimler AG. Daimler will retain a minority interest of 35% in Daimler Truck Holding AG and intends to transfer 5% to Daimler Pension Trust e.V., a registered association according to German law.
The Daimler shareholders will decide on this realignment of their company at an extraordinary general meeting on 1 October this year. In this context, a decision is also to be made on renaming Daimler AG as Mercedes-Benz Group AG as of 1 February 2022. This step is intended to emphasize the future focus of the company on the car and van business with the Mercedes-Benz brand as well as the sub-brands Mercedes-AMG, Mercedes-Maybach and Mercedes-EQ.
Bernd Pischetsrieder, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Daimler AG: “Today is a milestone in the nearly 140-year history of this unique company. Throughout Daimler’s history, the courage to fundamentally reinvent the company has been the key to its success. With the spin-off, the two independent listed companies will be able to fully concentrate on their differing customer groups and therefore become more efficient and more successful.”
Ola Källenius, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Mercedes-Benz AG: “Daimler’s realignment makes one success story into two. With this courageous step into a new future, we are creating added value with two pure-play companies for our customers, employees, shareholders and partners. In the future, the car and van business will focus even more on the premium and luxury segment and will consistently utilize its growth and profitability opportunities. As the most valuable luxury car brand, Mercedes-Benz aims for leadership in electric drive and vehicle software.”
Daimler investors to hold shares in two strong and independent companies
With the listing on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange the shareholders of Daimler AG and Daimler Truck Holding AG will have the opportunity to decide independently on their investments in the two companies. The intended share transfer to Daimler’s Pension Trust will increase the free float of Daimler Trucks Holding AG accordingly, a key indicator for inclusion in the leading German stock index DAX. Daimler will continue to hold a minority stake and will not exercise a controlling influence over Daimler Truck Holding AG. This is ensured through the conclusion of a deconsolidation agreement. The realignment of Daimler AG in two pure-play companies – both supported by a clear roadmap in terms of strategy, technology and performance targets – will offer an investment opportunity for their respective shareholders.
Michael Brecht, Deputy Chairman of the Supervisory Board and Chairman of the General Works Council of Daimler AG: “The future corporate structure will offer many professional development opportunities for our colleagues. Despite all the challenges, the transformation will also help us to focus on our future direction. We have to make our sites fit for the future. Of course, the Daimler Truck listing is a decisive and emotional event. Our colleagues trust that we are making the right decisions for them. That’s why our new structure must also become a success story for the employees.”
Daimler Truck aims to take a pioneering role in electrification and digitization
As an independent company, Daimler Truck Holding AG is the world market leader employing approximately 100,000 people at more than 35 main sites. Daimler Buses accounts for more than 17,000 of those employees. The truck business comprises the brands Mercedes-Benz, Freightliner, Western Star, FUSO and BharatBenz, and the bus brands are Mercedes-Benz, Setra, Thomas Built Buses and FUSO. Today’s Daimler Trucks & Buses division generated revenue of €18.7 billion in the first half of fiscal year 2021. EBIT amounted to €1.9 billion.
Martin Daum, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler Truck AG and designated Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler Truck Holding AG: “Our future independence offers us great opportunities and we will benefit consistently from them. To use an image from our industry: Up until now, we had to travel in a convoy. In the future, we will be able to plan our own route and choose the best route for us. This will enable us to make faster progress with our objective: We will lead the way to emission-free transport by accelerating the development of battery and fuel-cell vehicles. At the same time, we want to significantly increase our profitability. As an independent company, we will do everything we can to offer our customers the best products, our shareholders an attractive investment and our employees’ sustainable jobs.”
The vendor financial services business continues to be an essential factor for a successful business. As a vendor financial and mobility services company, Daimler Truck Financial Services will support the sales of trucks and buses in 16 markets, promote loyalty to the brands through long-term customer contact, and contribute to the company’s financial success. Already today, every fourth commercial vehicle sold is financed or leased by Daimler Mobility AG. The clear focus on battery and fuel-cell vehicles, as well as automated driving, will be supported by Daimler Truck Financial Services with corresponding financial services.
Sound capitalization and high liquidity
Right from the start, Daimler Truck Holding AG will have a sound financial position with high levels of capital and liquidity. As of 1 January 2021, shareholders’ equity on a pro-forma basis (IFRS) amounted to approximately €11.1 billion, equivalent to an equity ratio of 22%.
Daimler AG will equip Daimler Truck Holding AG with a net liquidity of €5 billion until the end of the year, targeting a solid investment-grade rating.
The Board of Management of Daimler Truck Holding AG should be identical to the current Board of Management of Daimler Truck AG. The current Board of Management of Daimler Truck AG is headed by Martin Daum as CEO. Karin Rådström is responsible for the Europe and Latin America regions and the Mercedes-Benz Truck brand. John O’Leary, CEO of Daimler Trucks North America, heads the North America region and the Freightliner, Western Star and Thomas Built Buses brands. Hartmut Schick, CEO of Daimler Trucks Asia, is responsible for the Asia region and the FUSO and BharatBenz brands. Andreas Gorbach leads the Truck Technology Group. Stephan Unger is responsible for Financial Services. Jochen Götz heads Finance and Controlling and Jürgen Hartwig the Human Resources department.
Long-time Siemens CEO Joe Kaeser has been nominated to lead the Supervisory Board as chairman. He will step down from the Daimler AG Supervisory Board. Marie Wieck (former General Manager IBM Blockchain), Laura Ipsen (President and CEO Ellucian Company L.P.), Jacques Esculier (former CEO and Chairman of WABCO Holdings), Martin Richenhagen (former Chairman, President and CEO, of AGCO Corporation), Akihiro Eto (former President and Global Chief Operating Officer of Bridgestone Corporation), John Krafcik (former CEO of Waymo LLC) as well as Michael Brosnan (former CFO of Fresenius Medical Care AG & Co. KGaA) are to be appointed to the Supervisory Board representing the shareholders. Renata Jungo Brüngger, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Mercedes-Benz AG responsible for Integrity and Legal, as well as Harald Wilhelm, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Mercedes-Benz AG responsible for Finance & Controlling, have also been nominated for the Supervisory Board.
Mercedes-Benz: claim to leadership in electric mobility, software and profitability
The remaining Daimler AG – to be renamed as Mercedes-Benz Group AG – with a global workforce of around 170,000 people will concentrate on the business with cars and vans. The company’s global production network comprises 35 production sites on four continents, including the global battery production network, plus further research, development and design centres. Mercedes-Benz has the ambition to build the world’s most desirable cars and to lead the way in electric mobility and vehicle software. This goes hand in hand with ambitious profitability targets. Today’s Daimler division Mercedes-Benz Cars & Vans, the core of the future Daimler Group, generated revenue of €55.0 billion and EBIT of €7.5 billion in the first half of fiscal year 2021. After the separation of Daimler Truck Financial Services, todays Daimler Mobility AG will be renamed Mercedes-Benz Mobility AG. This reflects the focus on customers of Mercedes-Benz cars and vans in some 40 markets worldwide, providing tailored financing, leasing and mobility solutions to strengthen customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Daimler assumes that the shares of Daimler AG will continue to fulfil the criteria for the DAX30. At the same time, the shares of Daimler Truck Holding AG – after the listing in the Prime Standard of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange – are expected to be included in the DAX at the first possible date, probably in the first quarter of 2022. The DAX is likely to be enlarged to 40 members.