Continental’s embattled CEO Karl-Thomas Neumann is expected to be ousted at a supervisory board meeting on 12 August.


A meeting yesterday failed to remove him when an attempt by the Schaeffler family, Conti’s biggest shareholder, failed to reach the required two-thirds majority as Neumann won the backing of union representatives. Continental will now pursue an arbitration process which requires only a simple majority to oust Neumann.


Schaeffler, which controls 50% of Continental directly and a further 40% indirectly, wants to replace Neumann with its auto division head Elmar Degenhart while Continental’s Nikolai Setzer will become new head of the car tyre business on the management board.


Before the attempted coup, Neumann managed to get the board’s approval for a capital increase of EUR1.5bn (US$2.1bn).


Continental had said earlier on Thursday that it would pursue restructuring measures after managing to make an operating profit in the second quarter of the year.


The capital hike was aimed at “strengthening the financial structure” of Continental which faces more than EUR10bn of debt.


Neumann called for the capital increase also as a way of diluting the Schaeffler family holding.