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Fujitsu Siemens sacks All The President's Men

Hoffman and Hoog awarded Grand Order of The Boot

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Fujitsu Siemens Computers has kicked out its joint presidents amid a warning over profits. Winfried Hoffmann and Robert Hoog left the top spot at the European PC vendor on Friday. Fujitsu Siemens insisted the two - formerly heads of Fujitsu Europe and Siemens respectively - would remain at the company and were happy with the demotions. "They have stepped down so we can appoint a single person to lead us," a Fujitsu Siemens representative said. But the company was unable to say what Hoffman and Hoog would do now that they were no longer directors - this will apparently be decided "over the next few weeks". Tetsuo Urano, executive vice chairman, has taken over the role of president temporarily until a "strong, international leader" can be found. "We have no idea when that will be," admitted the representative. Sources said the reason for the oustings lay in poor second quarter figures for the vendor. According to the Siemens Fujitsu representative, the job changes were a mutual decision. "The new financial year begins April 1. This will be the end of the integration of the two companies and we wanted to signal a new beginning with a single president and CEO." But she confirmed the company would not meet its profit targets for its first six months in business, ending 31 March. "January was pretty bad, after what was an excellent Q4," she said. "We set ourselves fairly tough targets in regard to revenue and volumes... There has been a great deal of investment and integration and general restructuring of the company. This will have eaten into the bottom line in terms of profitability." The company insisted this was only a "short term" hitch. Sources said Fujitsu Siemens had lost its footing under Hoffman, who had put too much emphasis on developing the consumer side of the business – ignoring the business sector. Word on the street is also that the integration process has not run as smoothly as the company claims – especially in the UK, where staff have been shunted to Farnborough, then back to the Bracknell offices. *Fujitsu-owned ICL is in talks to offload its European computer spares division to a 3i-backed MBO. The company expects £150 million from the sale. ® Related Stories Fujitsu Siemens PC sales don't shine Fujitsu Siemens sign on the dotted line

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