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Gerhard Wiedemann to be new IWKA CEO starting in 2007

After successfully restructuring the company, Wolfgang-Dietrich Hein will resign from his position at the end of the year

22 décembre 2006

Gerhard Wiedemann will be the new CEO of IWKA Aktiengesellschaft in Karlsruhe. On December 22, 2006, the company's Supervisory Board unanimously appointed Wiedemann to the position effective January 1, 2007. He succeeds Wolfgang-Dietrich Hein, who by amicable agreement will leave the company at the end of the year after successfully restructuring the Group.

At an extraordinary meeting of the Supervisory Board of IWKA Aktiengesellschaft on December 22, 2006, the members reached agreement on far-reaching personnel decisions for the further development of the Group.

Wolfgang-Dietrich Hein has resigned from his position as CEO of IWKA Aktiengesellschaft effective December 31, 2006. By then, Mr. Hein's task of strategically restructuring the Group, focusing it on its core competencies and disposing of non-core businesses will have been essentially completed. During his mandate, Hein successfully restructured and realigned IWKA, sold business entities such as the Balg- und Kompensatoren-, EX-CELL-O-, Boehringer- and ARO-Group, and reorganized the Group's financing, to name only some of his accomplishments. Hein managed to retain most of the jobs when selling the companies. After having generated losses in its core businesses, IWKA is again reporting positive earnings from operating activities in this area. All key indicators are trending upwards. The Supervisory Board thanks Wolfgang-Dietrich Hein for these successful achievements and wishes him much success in his future endeavors.

Effective January 1, 2007, Gerhard Wiedemann, Dipl.-Ing., will assume the position of CEO of IWKA. Gerhard Wiedemann (60) is chairman of the board of KUKA Schweissanlagen GmbH and since 2006 has been a full member of the Executive Board of IWKA Aktiengesellschaft, responsible for the Systems Technology division. Gerhard Wiedemann has degrees in mechanical engineering and business administration. His first professional achievements were registered when he was a project and sales engineer at MAN in Augsburg. After leaving MAN, he spent several years with a medium-size company in Augsburg before joining KUKA Schweissanlagen in 1977. Here he became first an authorized signatory, then managing director and subsequently chairman of the board of the company.

"Gerhard Wiedemann is an entrepreneurial individual with strong leadership skills, and has the right professional and personal attributes to take the KUKA plant engineering and robotics businesses also beyond the automotive industry," said Dr. Rolf Bartke, chairman of the Supervisory Board of IWKA AG, when the appointment was announced. "In this area, IWKA still has significant untapped potential for growth. By applying his excellent understanding of how to succeed in project-based businesses, Mr. Wiedemann will contribute decisively to realizing this potential."

"Taking the helm of IWKA as its CEO from here on is an exceptional assignment for me," said Gerhard Wiedemann following the appointment. "My almost thirty years of experience at KUKA Schweissanlagen, one of IWKA's key companies, will contribute to our ability to systematically expand our core business further. In addition to substantially growing sales, our goal is to sustainably strengthen the Group's earnings power, while at the same time improving shareholder value."

The members of the Executive Board of IWKA Aktiengesellschaft are Bernd Liepert, in charge of the Robotics division, Dr. Jürgen Koch, responsible for finance and controlling, and Gerhard Wiedemann. The Packaging division, which until now was led by Wolfgang-Dietrich Hein, will in future be managed by Dr. Jürgen Koch.

IWKA is a globally operating automation group for the mechanical and plant engineering sector in the divisions Systems Technology, Robotics and Packaging Technology, with currently about 7500 employees*. In 2005, the company generated sales revenues of EUR 1.6 billion*.