Press Release

Reorganization of the Carl Zeiss Board of Management

New structure lays the foundations for further growth

27 February 2002

OBERKOCHEN, Germany | 27 February 2002 | Corporate News
Subsequent to the departure of Dr. Olaf Berlien (39) who will be assuming a new position in German industry from April 1, 2002, the Carl Zeiss Board of Management will continue its activities with three members. This has been decided by the Administration of the Carl Zeiss Stiftung (Carl Zeiss Foundation), its Commissioner Dr. Heinz Dürr, and the Carl Zeiss Board of Management as the corporate bodies responsible within the foundation. The Commissioner also approved the proposed new structure of business responsibilities within the Carl Zeiss Board. From April 1, 2002, these will be reallocated as follows:
Dr. Dieter Kurz (54), President and Chief Executive Officer, will be responsible for the business groups Semiconductor Technology and Industrial Measuring Technology. His fields of activity will also include the areas Strategic Corporate Development, Human Resources and Executive Development, Corporate Communications, Legal Affairs, Auditing and Risk Management in addition to his responsibility for the American region. Dr. Kurz will remain Chairman of the Supervisory Board of both Carl Zeiss Jena GmbH and Hensoldt AG.
Dr. Norbert Gorny (38) will be responsible for the business groups Microscopy and Optoelectronic Systems. His other assignments will include Information Technology, Central Procurement, the future Oberkochen and Jena Service Centers, and the European region. The Jena plant will also number among his responsibilities.
Dr. Michael Kaschke (44) will be responsible for the business groups Consumer Optics and Medical Systems. His duties will include Group Finance and Controlling in addition to Accounting, Research, Quality Assurance, and the Asian region.

Organization sharpens its focus on further growth

The reallocation of responsibilities in the Board of Management is being accompanied by an organizational realignment of the Carl Zeiss Group. With this structure, the Group is consistently sharpening its focus on further growth. In mid-2001 the Board of Management created the ”Evolution” project to define and implement the targets involved. The restructuring is the company’s response both to the changed conditions now confronting it in international competition and to the increase in its overall size. President and CEO Dr. Dieter Kurz explains this as follows: ”In the past few years the growth in sales at Carl Zeiss has averaged 10% a year. We intend to ensure that we remain on course to further growth by tailoring the new structure to these changed dimensions.”

Independence of business groups increased

In future, the business groups will themselves be responsible for business-related functions relevant to their success such as financial controlling, human resource management and operational purchasing, allowing them to utilize growth opportunities more flexibly and with greater autonomy. This includes the possibility of cooperating with and acquiring other companies in order to open up new fields of business. Internally, the reorganization will improve the cooperation between the business groups and the service/central divisions.

To achieve this goal, two Service Centers will be set up in Oberkochen and Jena and allocated to Member of the Board Dr. Norbert Gorny. In this strategy, Dr. Gorny sees a major opportunity for the future: ”This focusing of services in two Service Centers will enable us to provide a uniform standard of quality throughout the entire Group, allowing internal customers to purchase top-class services from corporate units specially geared to their requirements.”

In addition to the Service Centers, there will also be Central Divisions which, due to their strategic importance, will be directly overseen by the Board of Management and each centrally managed within the Carl Zeiss Group. These areas include Research, Information Technology, Finance and Accounting, Legal Affairs and Patents, and Central Procurement. In addition, a new, ”slim” Corporate Center will be created which will be based in Oberkochen and support the Board of Management in the performance of its strategic duties.

The measures of the ”Evolution” project will be implemented by the beginning of the new fiscal year on October 1, 2002. The Works Council has approved the realignment in principle.

Press contact Jörg Nitschke

Head of Corporate Brand, Communications and Public Affairs


ZEISS is an internationally leading technology enterprise operating in the optics and optoelectronics industries. In the previous fiscal year, the ZEISS Group generated annual revenue totaling more than 5.8 billion euros in its four segments Industrial Quality & Research, Medical Technology, Consumer Markets and Semiconductor Manufacturing Technology (status: 30 September 2018).

For its customers, ZEISS develops, produces and distributes highly innovative solutions for industrial metrology and quality assurance, microscopy solutions for the life sciences and materials research, and medical technology solutions for diagnostics and treatment in ophthalmology and microsurgery. The name ZEISS is also synonymous with the world's leading lithography optics, which are used by the chip industry to manufacture semiconductor components. There is global demand for trendsetting ZEISS brand products such as eyeglass lenses, camera lenses and binoculars.

With a portfolio aligned with future growth areas like digitalization, healthcare and Smart Production and a strong brand, ZEISS is shaping the future far beyond the optics and optoelectronics industries. The company's significant, sustainable investments in research and development lay the foundation for the success and continued expansion of ZEISS' technology and market leadership.

With approximately 30,000 employees, ZEISS is active globally in almost 50 countries with around 60 of its own sales and service companies, more than 30 production sites and around 25 development sites. Founded in 1846 in Jena, the company is headquartered in Oberkochen, Germany. The Carl Zeiss Foundation, one of the largest foundations in Germany committed to the promotion of science, is the sole owner of the holding company, Carl Zeiss AG

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