Andreas Meyer will step down as CEO of SBB in 2020.
Press release, 04.09.2019
Andreas Meyer, CEO of SBB AG since 2007, decided in the spring to step down by the end of next year at the latest. He notified the Board of Directors of his intentions at an early stage and will continue to bear responsibility for the company until his successor takes over and will help to ensure a smooth transition. The Board of Directors has already started the search to appoint a new CEO.
“The timing of the announcement of my departure was decided at an early stage with the Board of Directors and reflects my intention to embark upon a new stage in my career before reaching the age of 60,” remarked SBB CEO Andreas Meyer at the media conference on the 2019 first-half results. “I will bear complete responsibility for the company until my departure and will give top priority to tackling the current challenges.”
This is the ideal time for a change as the 2020 strategy process will be completed next year. There will also be a generational change in various management positions over the coming years. Meyer wishes to leave the appointment of a new management team to his successor. He said: “I am looking forward to embarking upon a new chapter in my career where I can use my experience to a greater extent on strategic tasks and specific projects, including Board of Directors mandates and supporting start-ups and non-profit organisations.”
“We regret but understand Andreas Meyer’s wish to take this step”, indicated Monika Ribar, Chairwoman of SBB’s Board of Directors. “He has led SBB, a complex company, for 13 years and has successfully created a modern public service enterprise. As part of succession planning, we have been in constant discussion with Andreas Meyer and agreed this step together.” The timing of the announcement of his departure was decided between the Board of Directors and CEO in May 2019 and the search for a successor got under way at the same time.
After the tragic accident at the beginning of August and the questions raised, the Board of Directors still has complete confidence in Andreas Meyer and the Management Board: “They are faced with a very challenging situation. Appropriate measures have been taken and will be implemented with great commitment and sense of responsibility by our employees,” remarked Monika Ribar. Reflecting on Meyer’s term in office to date, she said: “Andreas Meyer has established an integrated railway system, which is the envy of many countries, and successfully undertaken various major projects.” He has also succeeded in putting in place a strong management team with the right ethos and driving forward the transformation of SBB into a modern company owned by and serving Switzerland.
Andreas Meyer has been CEO of SBB since January 2007. Thanks to significant public funding, Meyer believes SBB is one of the best railways in the world. As a result, he has “always felt responsible for delivering better services for our customers with our 33,000-strong workforce with less public funding and thereby contributing to Switzerland’s competitiveness.”
SBB has significantly increased its range of services during his term in office with stable prices over recent years. Major milestones include the repositioning of SBB Cargo, which has been returned to the black, and SBB Real Estate, which has been expanded into a key pillar of SBB as an independent division. Transparency over the condition of the network has been established, improvements have been made and the restructuring of the SBB pension fund has been initiated. Meyer’s term in office has also seen the digitisation of customer services and work equipment right through to the driver’s cab. Difficult moments included the strike at the industrial workshop in Bellinzona in 2008, the major delays to the introduction of the new long-distance double-deck trains and most recently safety issues.