New CEO and Majority Shareholder For Biketec
HUTTWIL, Switzerland – The Swiss E-bike manufacturer Biketec AG (maker of Flyer) continues its restructuring. Kurt Schär resigns as CEO and will be succeeded by Simon Lehman, while EGS Investments AG increased its financial commitment and is now majority shareholder.
Kurt Schär will remain member of the Board of Directors. At the end of this month Flyer co-founder and Product Manager Hans Furrer will also leave the Executive Committee of Biketec AG.
Nothing to do with the declining business
Kurt Schär is considered to be one of the smartest communicators of the Swiss bicycle industry. Recently he gave his personal view on the questionable StiWa test before the assembled press in Berlin. Today he is in the spotlight himself, announcing his unexpected resignation. According to Schär it has nothing to do with the declining business, partly attributable to the StiWa test. In 2013 Flyer sold less e-bikes for the second year on a row.
Kurt Schär stated that his resignation was obviously prepared ever since the beginning of last year, when the Ernst Goehner Foundation (EGS ) took a 40% stake in Biketec. Last spring the management team doubled in size to create the right conditions for Kurt Schär to step back. But Schär stipulates that this does not mean the end for him. “For me it is just a new position to work on a more strategic level,” says Schär.
“As of 1 March, I will be involved more closely with product development. The new range called ‘Next Generation’ we presented last autumn is just the beginning,” says Schär. The fact that not Schär but Franz Studer holds the position as Chairman of the Board is a direct result of the new ownership ratio with EGS Investments as majority shareholder.
Kurt Schär will continue to work in his office at the factory in combination with the new management team. He will assist the company’s new CEO Simon Lehmann who lacks in-depth knowledge of the (electric) bicycle industry. Instead his experience as CEO of Interhome, the Swiss market leader for holiday apartments and houses in new markets, should help Biketec to develop new businesses and export aereas such as Scandinavia.
To replace product manager Furrer, Biketec hired a new technical manager and a production manager.