Marie Langer, the new CEO of EOS [Source: EOS]
A surprise press release from EOS indicates the company has made some significant management changes.
The most notable change is right at the top: longtime CEO and Founder Hans J. Langer steps aside to make room for the new CEO, Marie Langer. Yes, she is the senior Langer’s daughter.
You see, EOS is indeed a family business. While being one of the largest 3D printer manufacturers in the world today, it is privately held and not publicly traded like Stratasys or 3D Systems. And the individuals holding the private shares of EOS are largely the Langer family.
CEO Change Indicators
When a CEO changes it is usually a very important event. In a public company the board of directors will carefully choose a new CEO after an extensive search. Their search criteria is (or should be) to find someone who has a proven ability to execute the board’s new strategy.
In that way one can usually look at the new CEO’s background and get a sense of what’s going on. If you see the new CEO specializes in sales, then expect to see changes in the company’s sales division, for example.
But in this case I think things are a little different. Langer Sr. founded EOS in 1989, which just happens to be exactly thirty years ago. I have a suspicion that this move is simply passing the torch to a new generation, something family businesses always do.
Thus I don’t expect to see major changes upcoming at EOS. And why should there be? The company has been quite successful over the years and continues to expand their reach around the world. If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.
EOS CTO Changes
That aside, EOS made some other changes of a more mysterious nature. They say:
“The previous CTO Dr. Tobias Abeln and the previous CCOO Bertrand Humel van der Lee are leaving the company by mutual agreement.
Dr. Hans J. Langer, founder of EOS GmbH and CEO of the EOS GROUP: “I would like to thank Tobias Abeln who has worked with passion and enthusiasm for the last eight years, during which he successfully built a strong and highly capable technical organization that has been a cornerstone of our success. I would also like to thank Bertrand Humel van der Lee, for his key contribution to Sales, Service and Marketing across all regions during his time at EOS.”
The words, “by mutual consent”, sometimes mean there is a disagreement in strategy going forward. EOS did change their technological organization recently, as they explain here:
“In October, EOS introduced a product line-oriented structure geared towards the needs of its customers and comprising four central divisions: metal systems, polymer systems and materials, software and innovation. This will maximize synergies, accelerate decision-making processes and ensure consistent support throughout the product life cycle.”
This is a good move; aligning an organization with its customers is always a good idea. That seems to be the major change taking place here.
Otherwise, I expect EOS to continue onward in much the same manner they have been doing, in spite of the top-level change.