Ericsson tips Volvo head as new board chair

Ericsson tips Volvo head as new board chair
Swedish group Ericsson, the world's biggest mobile phone network maker, said Thursday it planned to appoint Volvo chief executive Leif Johansson as chairman of its board.

Johansson, 59, said in December he would be stepping down from the helm of the world number two heavy goods vehicle manufacturer.

He had been Volvo’s chief executive since 1997 and refocused the company on heavy vehicles, selling its car business to Ford in 1999. It was subsequently bought by China’s Geely in August.

Ericsson’s current chairman Michael Treschow took over in March 2002 and announced in December he would step down.

He also chairs the Unilever board.

Handelsbanken analyst Martin Nilsson said Johansson’s appointment would not have a significant impact on Ericsson.

“Ericsson’s business is not driven by owners, it is essentially driven by the chief executive and the management. Therefore the choice of chairman is less important than in many other companies,” Nilsson told Dow Jones Newswires.

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