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Volkswagen chairman Piech refutes he is stepping down

Volkswagen chairman, Ferdinand Piech, 76, has refuted speculation he is soon to step down due to poor health and has said he will serve out the rest of his contract.
Ferdinand Piech and his wife Ursula Piech
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Marijan Murat/DPA/Press Association Images

Volkswagen chairman, Ferdinand Piech, 76, has refuted speculation he is soon to step down due to poor health and has said he will serve out the rest of his contract.

He made the statement to reporters at the Frankfurt car show in response to reports last week that company chief executive Martin Winterkorn was soon to takeover.

Piech’s contract, extended last year, runs into 2017.

It was rumoured that Volkswagen finance chief Hans Dieter Poetsch would replace Winterkorn until a longer-term solution was found.

Piech has been at the helm of the company for 20 years, first as chief executive and then as chairman – a role he has held since 2002.

Under his tenure Volkswagen has become the world’s third-largest carmaker and has grown through the purchase of luxury brands such as Bentley and Lamborghini.

Piech is the grandson of Ferdinand Porsche, who founded the eponymous sportscar brand.

Porsche is now part of the Volkswagen stable, which in turn is controlled by the Piech and Porsche families – descendants of Ferdinand Porsche – who own 51% of Volkswagen's stock.    

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