Company News, 2013-07-31, 04:10 PM
Death of Berthold Beitz
With great sadness the Supervisory Board, Executive Board, employees and Group Works Council of ThyssenKrupp AG have learned of the death of Prof. Dr. h.c. mult. Berthold Beitz. The Honorary Chairman of the Supervisory Board of ThyssenKrupp AG and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the non-profit Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach Foundation died on July 30, 2013 at the age of 99.
Prof. Dr. Ulrich Lehner, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of ThyssenKrupp AG, said: “In Berthold Beitz we have lost an outstanding figure who played a major role in shaping the company in the spirit of Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach. He personally oversaw and supported momentous changes in the Group. Berthold Beitz experienced the highs and lows of Germany’s recent history. During World War 2, together with his wife, he set an impressive example of courage and humanity by saving hundreds of persecuted Jews from the SS, risking his own life in the process. He played a key role in the post-war reconstruction of Germany. He is held in high esteem both in Germany and abroad.”
Dr. Heinrich Hiesinger, Chairman of the Executive Board of ThyssenKrupp AG, said: “I came to know Mr. Beitz as someone for whom the future of the company was always close to his heart. During the major change process over the last years, he gave us on the Executive Board encouragement and, where necessary, his unreserved support. He was an outstanding role model for our employees, whose welfare was always of central importance to him. We will honor his memory always.”
Berthold Beitz, born on September 26, 1913, was brought to Krupp in 1953 by Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach to be his personal chief executive. Alfried Krupp died in 1967. The decision by his son Arndt von Bohlen und Halbach to renounce his inheritance cleared the way for the establishment of the non-profit Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach Foundation and the conversion of the firm into a stock corporation. Berthold Beitz was named executor of Krupp’s will and in 1968 became Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach Foundation, which todays owns 25.3 percent of ThyssenKrupp. From 1970 he was Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Fried. Krupp GmbH, and from 1989 its Honorary Chairman. Following the formation of ThyssenKrupp AG in 1999 he was elected Honorary Chairman of the Supervisory Board. On the bicentenary of the firm of Krupp in November 2011 Berthold Beitz’s achievements in particular were recognized by the German Federal President and by the State Premier of North Rhine-Westphalia.
His great acts of humanity also shaped the corporate culture and social relations at ThyssenKrupp. This included in particular his good relations with employees. For him, social partnership was of great importance. Inside and outside the Group his advice was sought to the last.