3. Working methods of the Executive Board and Supervisory Board and composition of the committees of the Supervisory Board

The Executive Board and Supervisory Board of KION GROUP AG have a close and trusting working relationship focused on ensuring the sustained success of the Company. The members of the Executive Board regularly attend Supervisory Board meetings, unless the Supervisory Board decides to meet without the Executive Board.

The Executive Board promptly, comprehensively and regularly reports to the Supervisory Board on the performance of the KION Group. Besides the reporting obligations defined by law, the rules of procedure for the Executive Board of KION GROUP AG set out further reporting requirements and reservations of approval in favour of the Supervisory Board.

3.1 Working methods of the Executive Board

The Executive Board of KION GROUP AG now comprises five members, having been extended from four members with effect from 1 October 2018. It is responsible for managing the Company in the Company’s interest, i.e. taking account of shareholders, customers, employees and other stakeholders with the aim of creating sustainable added value. The Executive Board develops the Company’s strategy, discusses it with the Supervisory Board and ensures that it is implemented. Every Executive Board member is responsible for his or her own area of responsibility and keeps the other board members informed of developments on an ongoing basis. > TABLE 003

Responsibilities of Executive Board members as at 31 December 2018




Gordon Riske

KION Americas
Corporate Office
Corporate Communications
Corporate Strategy
Internal Audit
Corporate Compliance
KION Invest


Dr Eike Böhm

Product & Technology Strategy
Product Development Industrial Trucks
Product Development Supply Chain Solutions
Module & Component Development
Production System
KPDO Initiative


Anke Groth

Corporate Accounting / Tax
Corporate Controlling
Corporate Finance / M&A
Investor Relations
Financial Services
Corporate HR / Labour Relations Director
Health, Safety & Environment
Logistics / Urban


Ching Pong Quek

Chief Asia Pacific Officer of KION GROUP AG


Susanna Schneeberger

Software Development
Data Protection
Digital Campus
Mobile Automation


Rules of procedure laid down by the Supervisory Board define the areas of responsibility of the Executive Board members and the way in which they work together. The full Executive Board normally meets every 14 days and meetings are chaired by the Chief Executive Officer. Individual Executive Board members sometimes take part via video conference. At the meetings, the board members discuss measures and business that, under the Executive Board’s rules of procedure, require the approval of the full Executive Board. Resolutions of the full Executive Board are passed by simple majority unless a greater majority is required by law. The Chief Executive Officer has a casting vote in the event of a tied vote. Resolutions of the Executive Board may also be adopted between meetings. Taking account of the requirements of section 90 AktG, the Executive Board provides the Supervisory Board with regular, timely and comprehensive information on all matters of relevance to the business as a whole relating to the intended operating policy, strategic planning, business performance, financial position, financial performance and business risks. The Chief Executive Officer discusses these matters regularly with the chairman of the Supervisory Board.

The Executive Board’s rules of procedure specify that important transactions are subject to approval by the Supervisory Board. Budget planning, major acquisitions or capital expenditure, for example, require the consent of the Supervisory Board.

In accordance with its articles of association, the Company is represented by two members of the Executive Board or by one member of the Executive Board acting conjointly with a Prokurist (person with full commercial power of representation).

3.2 Working methods of the Supervisory Board

The Supervisory Board of KION GROUP AG appoints the members of the Executive Board and advises and monitors the Executive Board in its management of the Company. The Supervisory Board is fully involved from an early stage in all decisions that are fundamental to KION GROUP AG.

The Supervisory Board of KION GROUP AG consists of 16 members, eight of whom are employee representatives and eight are shareholder representatives. The shareholder representatives are elected by the Annual General Meeting by simple majority.

The Supervisory Board has drawn up rules of procedure for its work. These apply in addition to the requirements of the articles of association and also define the Supervisory Board committees. According to these rules, the chairman of the Supervisory Board coordinates its work and the cooperation with the Executive Board, chairs the meetings of the Supervisory Board and represents it externally. The Supervisory Board meets in person at least twice in each half of a calendar year, and adopts its resolutions at these meetings. In 2018, there were six Supervisory Board meetings in total. The focus of the Supervisory Board’s advisory activities is detailed in the Supervisory Board’s report to the Annual General Meeting. Between these meetings, resolutions may also be adopted in writing, by telephone or by other similar forms of voting, provided that the chairman of the Supervisory Board or, in his absence, his deputy, decides on this procedure for the individual case concerned. The Supervisory Board adopts resolutions by a simple majority of the votes cast unless a different procedure is prescribed by law. If a vote is tied, the matter will only be renegotiated if the majority of the Supervisory Board vote in favour of this option. Otherwise the Board must vote again without delay. If this new vote on the same matter also results in an equal number of votes for and against, the chairman of the Supervisory Board has a casting vote. The Supervisory Board has the efficiency of its work and processes reviewed by an external party at regular intervals.

3.3 Working methods and composition of the committees of the Supervisory Board

KION GROUP AG’s Supervisory Board had four standing committees in the year under review. Their tasks, responsibilities and work processes comply with the provisions of the German Stock Corporation Act and the German Corporate Governance Code. The chairman of each committee reports regularly to the full Supervisory Board on the committee’s work. The minutes of the committee meetings are made available to all Supervisory Board members. The standing committees have each drawn up rules of procedure that define their tasks and working methods.

Executive Committee

The Executive Committee consists of four shareholder representatives and four employee representatives. Its chairman is always the chairman of the Supervisory Board. It prepares the meetings of the Supervisory Board and is responsible for ongoing matters between Supervisory Board meetings. The Executive Committee also prepares the Supervisory Board’s decisions relating to corporate governance, particularly amendments to the comply-or-explain statement pursuant to section 161 AktG reflecting changed circumstances and the checking of adherence to the comply-or-explain statement. It also prepares documents for the Supervisory Board when Executive Board members are to be appointed or removed and, if applicable, when a new Chief Executive Officer is to be appointed. Documents relating to any matters in connection with Executive Board remuneration are also compiled by the Executive Committee. In addition, the Executive Committee is responsible for resolutions concerning the conclusion, amendment and termination of Executive Board employment contracts and agreements with Executive Board members governing pensions, severance packages, consultancy and other matters and for resolutions on any matters arising as a result of such contracts and agreements, unless they relate to remuneration. The responsibilities of the Executive Committee also include resolutions about the extension of loans to Executive Board members, Supervisory Board members and parties related to them within the meaning of sections 89 and 115 AktG, as well as resolutions to approve contracts with Supervisory Board members outside their Supervisory Board remit. The Executive Committee should – in consultation with the Executive Board – regularly deliberate on long-term succession planning for the Executive Board.

The Executive Committee met four times in 2018. The main topics discussed and deliberated upon by the Executive Committee in 2018 concerned the creation of a new, fifth Executive Board role and the associated appointment of Ms Susanna Schneeberger as Chief Digital Officer and the extension of the term of Dr Eike Böhm as Chief Technology Officer of KION GROUP AG. Topics related to the Annual General Meeting, governance and the review of the efficiency of the Supervisory Board were also addressed.

Members of the Executive Committee as at 31 December 2018:

  • Dr John Feldmann (chairman)
  • Özcan Pancarci (deputy chairman)
  • Dr Alexander Dibelius
  • Jiang Kui
  • Olaf Kunz
  • Jörg Milla
  • Hans Peter Ring
  • Claudia Wenzel

Mediation Committee

The Mediation Committee comprises the chairman of the Supervisory Board, his deputy, an employee representative and a shareholder representative. It only convenes in exceptional cases. If the two-thirds-of-votes majority required by section 27 (3) and section 31 (3) MitbestG is not reached in a vote by the Supervisory Board on the appointment of an Executive Board member, the Mediation Committee must propose candidates for the post to the Supervisory Board within one month. The chairman of the Supervisory Board does not have a casting vote on the candidates proposed. The Mediation Committee did not need to be convened in 2018.

Members of the Mediation Committee as at 31 December 2018:

  • Dr John Feldmann (chairman)
  • Özcan Pancarci (deputy chairman)
  • Jörg Milla
  • Hans Peter Ring

Audit Committee

The Audit Committee comprises four members. Its primary purpose is to monitor financial reporting (including non-financial reporting), the accounting process, the effectiveness of the internal control system, the risk management system, the internal audit system, the auditing of the financial statements and compliance, thereby supporting the Supervisory Board in its task of monitoring the Company’s management. The Audit Committee also reviews the work carried out by the independent auditors and checks that the independent auditors are qualified and independent. It is also responsible for engaging the independent auditors, determining the focus of the audit and agreeing the fee. In addition, the Audit Committee exercises the rights in investee companies set forth in section 32 (1) MitbestG.

The Audit Committee met five times in 2018. The main topics discussed by the Audit Committee in 2018 were the 2017 annual financial statements, the quarterly statements, the interim report, the budget, the Company’s sustainability report and the regular subject of the key elements of corporate governance and risk control systems within the Company.

Members of the Audit Committee as at 31 December 2018:

  • Hans Peter Ring (chairman)
  • Alexandra Schädler (deputy chairwoman)
  • Dr John Feldmann
  • Jörg Milla

The chairman of the Audit Committee, Hans Peter Ring, is an independent member of the Supervisory Board and has the required expertise in the areas of accountancy and auditing specified in sections 100 (5) and 107 (4) AktG.

Nomination Committee

The Nomination Committee has four members, all of whom are shareholder representatives and are elected by the shareholder representatives on the Supervisory Board. The Nomination Committee’s only task is to propose new candidates for the Supervisory Board to the Company’s Annual General Meeting. The Nomination Committee met once in 2018 to discuss the appointment of Dr Michael Macht to the Supervisory Board.

Members of the Nomination Committee as at 31 December 2018:

  • Dr John Feldmann (chairman)
  • Dr Alexander Dibelius (deputy chairman)
  • Birgit A. Behrendt
  • Jiang Kui