“Never gray – always black or white.” That was the motto of Jürgen E. Schrempp. Schrempp has overcome many challenges throughout his career. In doing so, he has been able to rely on his extensive international experience, willingness to take risks and flexibility. Those who know him describe Schrempp as a likeable and congenial man with an engaging manner who has a highly valued view on matters, a keen sense of humor and an unshakeable sense of loyalty. He owes his indisputable success to these characteristics.
Jürgen E. Schrempp served as Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler-Benz AG / DaimlerChrysler AG until 2005. He served as President of Mercedes-Benz South Africa, President of Euclid, USA, as well as Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler-Benz Aerospace.
Schrempp spent much of his 45-year career at Daimler steering the Group’s businesses in Europe, the USA and South Africa.
He started in the International Service Department at the Head Office of Daimler in Stuttgart after graduating as Engineer.
Subsequently he was posted to South Africa with Mercedes-Benz. As head of customer service he was responsible for the country wide service organisation and appointed Board Member responsible for engineering.
He then moved to the United States where he served as president of Euclid Inc., overseeing the successful restructuring of the Daimler-Benz AG subsidiary in Cleveland, Ohio, followed by the sale of this US off highway truck company.
He returned to South Africa in 1985 as president of Mercedes-Benz of South Africa. Even at that early stage he campaigned for the abolition of apartheid.
He was called back to Germany to become Director worldwide sales & marketing of Commercial Vehicles; later appointed to the Board.
With the strategic decision of the Board to enter the aerospace business he structured the various parts in Germany in one company – first Deutsche Aerospace and then Daimler Aerospace.
With this strong position, he was able together with French industrialist Jean-Luc Lagardère, to form the European aerospace company EADS, today AIRBUS.
The new group immediately became the world´s second largest aerospace company, whose establishment was considered an important milestone in Europe´s competition with United States.
After becoming chairman of the management of the board of Daimler, he was instrumental in the merger with Chrysler, the majority acquisition of Mitsubishi and the equity participation in Hyundai. This “Three Pillars” strategy, to expand the reach of Daimler-Benz into the major global markets and benefit from economies of scale, particularly as far as the development of new technologies were concerned, was after his departure abandoned.
He retired on his request after 45 years with the company, 17 years on the board of which he served ten years as chairman of the executive board.
“IT WAS ONE OF THE MOST PROFESSIONAL AND BEST RELATIONSHIP I’VE HAD IN MY CAREER.”
Hilmar Kopper, Supervisory Board Chairman of DaimlerChryslerAG (from 1998 to 2007).
Sadly, Hilmar Kopper passed away on November 11, 2021. His obituary contained these remarks:
“Kopper chaired the Daimler Supervisory Board for 17 years. The idea of a merger of Daimler-Benz and Chrysler was presented to him by the former CEO Jürgen Schrempp 1998 when he visited Kopper at his home. Kopper fully agreed with his idea and immediately open a bottle of 1975 Chateau Lafite to celebrate the occasion. When Schrempp´s concept of a “World AG” failed, Kopper defended the manager strongly against any criticism.”
Iron Mineral Beneficiation Services (IMBS) is a South African company focused on the production of metallic iron units. IMBS has developed Finesmelt™, a cost efficient technology capable of processing fine and superfine iron ore in an environmentally friendly manner.
Jürgen E. Schrempp is Chairman of the Board of Directors and Shareholders.
Jürgen E. Schrempp was born in Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany on September 15, 1944. His father was running the administration of the university Freiburg, his mother was a Housewife. Jürgen Schrempp went to high school “Rotteck Gymnasium” in Freiburg.
After an apprenticeship as car mechanic at Daimler-Benz, he studied mechanical engineering at the University of Applied Science in Offenburg, Germany. He graduated with a degree (Bachelor; Diplom Ingenieur) in engineering. He financed his study by playing trumpet in a band. He also has had various jobs to support his living, like armed guard at a camping place in France, scaffolding builder, floor installers, sewer cleaner, brick builder.
Schrempp currently resides in Munich. He is married to Lydia; the couple has two children. He has two sons from his previous marriage.