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Bayer investor calls for CEO replacement

Prior to his scheduled retirement, Bayer investor Deka demanded that CEO Werner Baumann be replaced, adding to the growing pressure on the German pharmaceutical company. According to Ingo Speich, Head of Sustainability and Corporate Governance at Deka, "Bayer requires a new strategic positioning, which cannot be legitimately accomplished under Werner Baumann," remarks made on Saturday were reported in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung (FAS) newspaper.

The mutual fund company is one of the top 20 shareholders in Bayer. Norbert Winkeljohann, the chairman, has a window of opportunity to take action before the annual general meeting at the end of April. He must take advantage of that chance or else pressure will mount on him as well, Speich continued. A Bayer spokesman said they were "generally open to a constructive engagement with our stakeholders" but would not comment directly on the interview.

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