Bertelsmann Fires DirectGroup Boss as Overhaul Continues

12 August 2002

The upheaval at German media giant Bertelsmann continues, with the sacking of retailing and e-commerce chief Klaus Eierhoff.

Replacing Eierhoff as boss of the DirectGroup collection of book clubs and online booksellers is Bertelsmann’s chief operating officer Ewald Walgenbach, with immediate effect.

Eierhoff’s dismissal is said to reflect the group’s shift in focus from internet ventures under new chairman/ceo Gunter Thielen, who took charge after the shock departure of Thomas Middelhoff [WAMN: 29-Jul-02].

Thielen intends to consolidate existing units rather than invest in new media – a strategy that includes turning DirectGroup into “a core business with sustainable profitability.”

Data sourced from: Washington Post Online; additional content by WARC staff