Charitably speaking, Deutsche Bank’s next CEO faces… challenges. As if to emphasize the enormous difficulty that person faces, the bank’s chairman has decided to make the search for its next leader a microcosm of the existential clusterfuck that is Deutsche Bank, starting with the fact that the current CEO doesn’t think he needs replacing for a few years still—in spite of everything—and a fair chunk of the board agrees.
Deutsche Bank supervisory board members, like many investors, have been divided in recent months over whether the lender should explore replacing Mr. Cryan and about the strength of internal candidates for the job, some of the people said…. Some supervisory-board members remain supportive of Mr. Cryan and are concerned that a move to recruit CEO candidates undercuts him at a difficult time, according to people familiar with the matter. Some say even a strong, new chief executive from outside would bring risks, such as integrating with other executives and navigating Deutsche Bank’s particularly difficult regulatory, technology and expense-control hurdles.
And yet, the search goes on, either because Deutsche Bank can’t help but doing things wrong, or because—given Cryan’s tenure and those of his immediate predecessors—the very meanings of “right” and “wrong” have ceased to have much currency on the Taunusanlage.
It is unclear whether other supervisory-board members besides the chairman have been directly involved in reaching out to potential CEO candidates…. The Times of London earlier reported that Deutsche Bank had considered external candidates as potential CEOs, including Jean-Pierre Mustier of Italy’s UniCredit SpA andGoldman Sachs Group Inc. European executive Richard Gnodde…. Mr. Achleitner spoke with Mr. Gnodde directly in recent months, a person briefed on the matter said.