LEVERKUSEN, Germany – Bayer CropScience AG, one of the world's leading companies in the areas of crop protection, seeds and biotechnology, is adopting a new organizational structure effective July 1, 2004.
"Following the successful integration of Aventis CropScience we can now streamline our structures and further enhance our focus on market requirements," explains Professor Friedrich Berschauer, chairman of the Board of Management of this Bayer subgroup. "We're going for a leaner organization, optimizing our strategic and operational decision-making and redefining responsibilities."
Notably, there will now be a smaller Executive Committee, comprising the members of the Board of Management, the heads of the regions and the heads of the Environmental Science and BioScience Business Groups. A number of changes are being made on the Board of Management.
CEO Berschauer and Bernward Garthoff, already responsible for research and development, will be joined on the Board of Management by Rüdiger Scheitza (portfolio management and labor director), Dirk Suwelack (business planning & administration) and Wolfgang Welter (industrial operations and investments).
Bayer CropScience's business activities in more than 120 countries will in the future be organized into three regions (currently five): Americas, Europe & TAMECIS (Turkey, Africa, Middle East, Commonwealth of Independent States) and Asia Pacific.
Current board members Esmail Zirakparvar and Willy Scherf will take on new assignments in the United States: Zirakparvar will become head of Bayer CropScience's new Americas Region, while Willy Scherf is relocating to Pittsburgh, Pa., to head up Bayer Corporate and Business Services.
New members of the Board of Management of Bayer CropScience Rüdiger Scheitza, who was born in Harting, near Regensburg, Germany, has been in charge of portfolio management at Bayer CropScience since June 2002. Having studied agricultural science in Munich, he joined Bayer AG in 1982, where he held a number of positions in Applications Technology and Consulting in the former Crop Protection Business Group. In 1992, he was placed in charge of the business group's Eastern German Region. In 1993, he moved back to headquarters, initially as head of marketing in Western Europe and subsequently as head of global registration for crop protection products. From 1997 to 1998, Dr. Scheitza was responsible for Bayer Vital's crop protection business in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. In October 1998 he was given responsibility for global crop protection development, later switching to his current position. He is married and has a daughter.
Dirk Suwelack, who was born in Billerbeck, near Münster, Germany, is currently head of Controlling in the Group Accounting and Controlling department of Bayer's Corporate Center. Dr. Suwelack studied physics at the universities of Münster and Dortmund and then spent a post-doc year at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the United States. He joined Bayer in 1981 as a laboratory manager at the Pharmaceuticals Research Center in Wuppertal, Germany. He subsequently held a number of other positions, including project manager and head of planning and administration in clinical development. In 1992, Suwelack transferred for four years to Bayer Yakuhin, Ltd. in Osaka, Japan, where he was head of corporate planning for Pharmaceuticals and Consumer Care. Back in Leverkusen, he headed the strategic planning unit in Business Planning & Administration from 1996 to 2001 before moving to his current position. Dr. Suwelack is married and has two children.
Wolfgang Welter, born in Oberbexbach, Germany, has been head of Industrial Operations at Bayer CropScience since 2002. He studied chemistry in Saarbrücken and Kaiserslautern. In 1977, he joined what was then Hoechst AG, where he undertook a variety of functions and international assignments. From 1994 to 1999 he was production manager at Agrevo. He then took over as head of Manufacturing at Aventis CropScience, France. Since Bayer's acquisition of Aventis CropScience in 2002, Wolfgang Welter has been in charge of Industrial Operations and QHSE at Bayer CropScience in Monheim, Germany. He is married and has two children.