U.S. Sanctions on Russia Stall Porsche SE Board Assignment

May 15, 2018 at 4:59 PM

U.S. economic sanctions against Russia have interfered with plans by Porsche Automobil Holding SE to add GAZ Group Chairman Siegfried Wolf to its supervisory board.

Porsche SE says Wolf has postponed the move because of U.S. sanctions imposed against GAZ and its owner, Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska. Wolf’s seat will remain vacant, awaiting his “clearance of harmlessness” at the carmaker.

Wolf and three members of the Porsche family were to join the Porsche SE board today. The company holds a controlling stake in Volkswagen AG.

Wolf is a past co-CEO of Canada’s Magna International Inc., where he was best-known for leading an attempt in 2009 to buy Opel/Vauxhall from General Motors Co.

That deal, which GM eventually rejected, involved GAZ as a silent partner. Shortly thereafter Wolf left Magna to join Basic Element, Deripaska’s holding company, and became chairman of GAZ.