Following a long-planned succession plan, German machine and plant manufacturer DIEFFENBACHER is changing the responsibilities and composition of its Management Board effective January 1, 2024. With the appointment of DIEFFENBACHER shareholder Lukas Langer to the management team, it will grow from three to four members. Lukas Langer will take over the position of Chief Financial Officer (CFO) from Volker Kitzelmann, who will continue as a member of the DIEFFENBACHER Management Board. The responsibilities of CEO Christian Dieffenbacher and CTO Lothar Fischer remain unchanged.
Lukas Langer joined DIEFFENBACHER in February 2021 and has since assumed responsibilities for HR and IT across the Group. He also played a key role in shaping the acquisition process for DIEFFENBACHER Energy GmbH in 2022 and 2023 and subsequently establishing the new Energy business unit. After studying business administration at the University of Mannheim (B.Sc.) as well as at the London School of Economics and Yale University (M.Sc.), Langer initially worked for five years in purchasing for steel and body parts at what is now Mercedes-Benz AG and on the strategy team for the Board of Management with a focus on production.
“I am proud to be following in the footsteps of my grandfather Albert Dieffenbacher, who ran the company together with his cousin Gerhard from 1952 to 1985 in the third generation, and my uncle Axel Dieffenbacher, who was part of the management team from 1997 to 2012,” says Langer. “I am very much looking forward to my new role and, above all, to working even more closely with Christian, Lothar Fischer and Volker Kitzelmann on the Management Board.”
Volker Kitzelmann has held various positions at DIEFFENBACHER for more than 35 years. He started in January 1988 as Head of Controlling before taking over the management of the entire commercial department in 1993. Additionally, he became Head of the Wood business unit in 2005. In March 2016, Kitzelmann joined the Management Board as CFO and was responsible for the Finance and Controlling, Auditing, Legal and HR departments. In the new composition of the DIEFFENBACHER Management Board, Kitzelmann’s role will include, among other duties, overall responsibility for the Energy business unit, which was founded at the beginning of 2023.
“Lukas Langer and I have used the past three years to prepare for the handover of responsibility and my duties as CFO in the best possible way. During that time, I got to know and appreciate him very well, both personally and professionally. This makes me all the more happy to pass the baton to him,” says Kitzelmann about his successor as CFO, Lukas Langer.
“We are very fortunate that we have been able to fill the CFO position with a family member. I am delighted that two members of the Dieffenbacher family will now be involved in the management of our company,” explains CEO Christian Dieffenbacher. “We have a lot to thank Volker Kitzelmann for over the years. We are grateful that he will remain with us on the Management Board.”