In addition, entire sections of the company's plants in Braunschweig, Kassel and Salzgitter could be sold off to suppliers. VW shares were the day's top performer, climbing by more than 9 percent, suddenly upping the value of the VW Group by 1.6 billion -- at least on paper.
The jump in the price of VW stock was the market's reaction to Pischetsrieder's announcement that the company's board had put together a sweeping restructuring program for Volkswagen AG. Which parts of the company will be sold off, and to whom?
In addition to being unproductive, the German VW plants also pay their employees some of the highest wages in the industry.
Most Volkswagen workers know how bad things look for the company.
Wulff, a member of the conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU), suddenly joined forces with supervisory board member Osterloh.Designers of the new Golf and Passat made the vehicles too complicated and their special rear axle and door designs make the vehicles difficult to manufacture.Workers are constantly retooling and making minor adjustments.Although Bernhard is addressing these problems, they probably can't be solved until the next model is rolled out. Even though the brand group earned a small profit in 2005, VW could quickly find itself plunging into the loss zone if it is forced to shave off a few percentage points on its customer discounts.Demanding more from the workforce Pischetsrieder and Bernhard essentially agree that labor costs must be reduced, which can only be achieved if employees agree to work longer hours for the same pay.
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At Germany's International Automobile Show in Frankfurt five months ago, Volkswagen brand director Wolfgang Bernhard said that Europe's biggest automotive group is in trouble, and that unless the company can cut costs drastically and quickly, Volkswagen will have "no future." Bernhard even went so far as to say that without reform the Wolfsburg-based company would find itself in the same position as battered US giant General Motors."We have to move quickly -- and not crawl -- if we hope to save this company," Bernhard said.To get there, the two executives plan to sit down with labor representatives and negotiate a return to the five-day, 35-hour work week. gratis kontakte Reutlingen In some areas, such as development, VW even plans to ask its workers to go back to working 40 hours a week.And there was plenty to consider after the VW scandal involving pleasure trips for members of the company's workers' council, after Porsche's surprising bid to acquire a controlling stake in VW and after the row between the sports car manufacturer and the country's second-largest shareholder, the German state of Lower Saxony.
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Add to that the fact that Pischetsrieder's contract renewal was long up in the air and, given Supervisory Board Chairman Ferdinand Piëch's dissatisfaction with the former BMW CEO's performance, the last thing Pischetsrieder wanted to do was quarrel with the company's influential workers' council.
Why should the company build even more cars at its most expensive locations?
Pischetsrieder either has no plan for solving the dilemma, or he just hasn't presented it to employees. Workers' council elections are coming up soon, and supervisory board member Osterloh, if only for tactical reasons, is likely to make a fuss about the board's cost-cutting measures.
Besides, Pischetsrieder's contract renewal is by no means as certain as it seemed a few weeks ago.
Although Lower Saxony Governor Wulff and Porsche CEO Wendelin Wiedeking, who represents VW's new major shareholder Porsche on the company's supervisory board, have spoken out in favor of renewing Pischetsrieder's contract, many on the employee side doubt that Pischetsrieder is the right man for the job.