Vattenfall appoints new CEO, cuts R&D

SWEDEN: Vattenfall has appointed Magnus Hall, CEO of Swedish paper manufacturing firm Holmen, to replace its outgoing CEO, Øystein Løset.

Magnus Hall has been appointed as the new CEO of Vattenfall
Magnus Hall has been appointed as the new CEO of Vattenfall

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Hall, who has a masters degree in industrial engineering, arrives at Vattenfall after spending 29 years at Swedish paper manufacturer Holmen. He has been Holmen's CEO for the last ten years.

The government-owned power company has also announced plans to scale back investment in research and development (R&D) and close down some of its offshore wind R&D projects.

A company spokesperson said it was unclear how much will be cut from R&D or which projects will be affected but there will be some redundancies.

Vattenfall said they wish to alter its portfolio and focus on R&D projects which will add to its business development faster.

The company is currently developing the 288MW DanTysk offshore wind project in the German North Sea.

Hall will start as CEO on 1 October. In 2013, Holmen signed a deal with Vestas to supply 17 3MW turbines to power a paper mill near Stockholm.

He is also chairman of BasEl Industrikraft – an association of Swedish companies, including Holmen, which looks to secure power supply to the country's heavy industries.

In 2009, Industrikraft and Vattenfall signed a letter of intent, which aimed to secure power production from renewable and low-carbon sources. The partnership ended in 2011. Hall will be stepping down as Industrikraft chairman to take up his new role.

Outgoing CEO Øystein Løseth will remain in the role until the autumn and be consulting the company until his contract expires in March 2015.

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