ABB Names New CEO

June 17, 2013
Former head of Discrete Automation and Motion division, Ulrich Spiesshofer, will succeed Joe Hogan as chief executive officer on September 15.

The Board of ABB has unanimously appointed Ulrich Spiesshofer the head of its Discrete Automation and Motion (DM) division, as Chief Executive Officer. He will succeed Joe Hogan in this role in an orderly transition on September 15, 2013. Hogan will continue with ABB for some months as Senior Advisor to the Board.

Spiesshofer joined the Executive Committee of the Zurich-based power and automation technology company in 2005, and was named responsible for DM in 2009. He has led a doubling of the division’s revenues by organic and inorganic means, and the integration of motor-maker Baldor—ABB’s largest ever acquisition.

“ABB www.abb.com has developed a strong bench of talent: I am extremely pleased that the new CEO comes from within the company, and brings a solid track record and deep knowledge of the portfolio,” said ABB Chairman Hubertus von Grünberg. “Ulrich has been a key force in shaping and implementing ABB’s strategy, and the integration of Baldor stands out as a benchmark for successful large acquisitions.”

A successor to Spiesshofer’s role in DM will be announced in due course, added Grünberg.

According to a company press release, Spiesshofer increased profit margins through a turnaround in Robotics, as well as the profitable growth and relentless execution of the motors and drives activities. Spiesshofer also initiated other business expansion activities in DM based on organic growth and acquisitions. These have helped DM to grow faster than the market and to expand into new business areas such as e-mobility and uninterruptible power supplies (UPS), as well as to better balance the business geographically, according to the release. The planned acquisition of Power-One would make ABB a leading global supplier of solar inverters. 

Prior to taking over DM, Spiesshofer was responsible for Corporate Development, leading strategy development and implementation across the power and automation businesses, in very close collaboration with all of ABB’s teams. This included ABB’s roadmap for mergers and acquisitions and the formation of ABB’s technology venture arm. In this role, he strengthened ABB’s operational excellence and procurement processes, laying the groundwork for the cost savings program that has been executed over the past few years of global economic crisis.

“I am excited about the opportunity to lead ABB and serve our customers, building on Joe’s success,” said Spiesshofer. “I am looking forward to keep working with all my colleagues in the Executive Committee and the entire ABB team. Together, we will continue to drive profitable growth and relentless execution for the company.”

Before joining ABB, Spiesshofer spent three years at Roland Berger Strategy Consultants and 11 years at A.T. Kearney management consultants, where he built successful consulting businesses in industries including oil and gas, utilities, telecoms and automotive, in Europe, Asia and the Americas. He has a master’s degree in Business Administration and Engineering, and a PhD in Economics, both from the University of Stuttgart, Germany.

The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 145,000 people.

Companies in this Article

Sponsored Recommendations

Understanding and Using E-Stops

E-stops, or emergency stop switches, are used to ensure machine as well as personnel safety. They are used to provide a consistent and predictable failsafe response on a wide ...

Demystifying motor disconnect switches: What are they and how are they used?

From conveyor belts to drum mixers, motors are used in virtually every industrial application to drive machinery. Equipment downtime is the main motivation behind monitoring and...

Full Line of DIN Rail Terminal Blocks Video

Altech offers an extensive line of DIN Rail Terminal Blocks including all major Connection Technologies available in the industry to meet requirements for a vast variety of applications...

The Value of Integrating DIN Rail Cylindrical Fuse Holders Into Your Designs

What short circuit currents do I have to consider when purchasing a DIN rail cylindrical fuse holder? That data is available from the manufacturer. For example, Altech cylindrical...