With Torsten Hufnagel, Aldi Nord is getting its first CEO

Aldi north

The dispute between the family tribes threatened to block the development of the discounter.

(Photo: AFP/Getty Images)

Dusseldorf After the two owners of the Aldi Nord group have settled their family dispute, the discounter gets a new corporate structure. For the first time, the company is managed by a CEO, as Aldi Nord announced on Tuesday. According to the will of the shareholders, this position will be taken over by Torsten Hufnagel, who has been responsible for the board of directors since 2018.

On Monday evening, the shareholders announced that they had ended their years of legal disputes and agreed on a new structure for the group of companies. The problem was the complicated ownership structure. There are three foundations based in Schleswig-Holstein behind Aldi Nord: the Markus, Lukas and Jakobus foundations. So far, important decisions on strategy and investments could only be made unanimously.

However, there was a dispute about the power in the Jakobus Foundation between the family line around the founder’s son Theo Albrecht junior on the one hand and the heirs of his brother Berthold, who died in 2012, on the other. This threatened to block the development of the company, since there was also personal animosity between Theo Albrecht and his sister-in-law Babette Albrecht, which made an agreement almost impossible for a long time.

Aldi Nord: New supervisory board to represent the interests of the owners

A new parent company holding company is now being established, which is managed by Hufnagel. The previous board of directors will be dissolved. The interests of the owners are represented by a supervisory board. This should be occupied equally by both family lines, as the company announced.

“From the company’s point of view, this is an important, courageous step that will make Aldi Nord future-proof and stable,” said a spokesman. However, the changes primarily affect the shareholder structures and corporate governance at the highest level, he emphasized, and the restructuring does not change the operational process.

The new holding will control the operative business in the future. All areas then report to Hufnagel. This also includes the individual national companies that operate the discount business, but also the holdings of Aldi Nord such as roasting plants and the mineral fountain, which will be bundled in a separate company in the future.

The new structures are to be implemented step by step by the end of 2023. This still requires coordination with the tax authorities and the approval of the responsible foundation supervisory authority, the district of Rendsburg-Eckernförde.

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