AURORA, Canada - Magna International
Inc. announced that Siegfried Wolf, Magna's
Co-Chief Executive Officer, has resigned as a director and officer
effective November 15, 2010, in order to pursue an opportunity with
Basic Element and its machinery division OJSC Russian Machines, the
parent company of Russian automotive OEM, GAZ Group. Magna's Board of
Directors has accepted Mr. Wolf's resignation and has confirmed that
Donald Walker will be Magna's sole Chief Executive Officer.
Frank Stronach, Magna's Chairman, stated: "On behalf of the Board,
management and Magna's employees, I would like to express our
appreciation for Sigi's major contribution to Magna's success over the
years, including in establishing our strong presence in Europe. When
Oleg Deripaska recently approached us for permission for Basic Element
to make an offer to Sigi, we made it clear that the decision should
ultimately rest with Sigi. Magna's decentralized culture and operating
principles ensure that our success is not dependent on any one person.
We respect the choice Sigi has made and wish him success in pursuing
this new challenge."
Added Frank: "We also recognize the potential benefits that could
arise from this opportunity - Magna stands to further strengthen its
relationship with Basic Element and continue to grow in the recovering
Russian automotive market, while Basic Element gains an experienced
manager with extensive full vehicle assembly expertise who can
immediately assist its automotive division in pursuing its modernization
and growth strategy."
"Sigi has done a great job for Magna, particularly in building a
strong European management team and strengthening our relationships with
our European-based customers," added Don Walker. "Notwithstanding this
change, our executive management team, together with the global
management teams at our operating groups and the decentralized
management of our operating divisions remain committed to continuing to
deliver strong operating and financial results with a continued focus on
innovation and expanding our geographic footprint."
Mr. Wolf stated: "I have the utmost respect for Magna and the culture
and principles that Frank Stronach has instilled. While I look forward
to this new challenge with Basic Element, I intend to remain a friend
and strong supporter of Magna and have no doubt that it will continue to
succeed under the guidance of Don and the rest of the executive
management team. I also look forward to potential future opportunities
to work together with Magna in connection with Magna's ongoing expansion
strategy in Russia and the important role that I am sure it will play in
the development of the Russian automotive industry."