At Deutsche Telekom, the head of Deutsche Post, Frank Appel, is the favorite to succeed Ulrich Lehner, chairman of the supervisory board, according to a media report. At a meeting of the board of directors on December 15, a preliminary decision could be made, the "Handelsblatt" reported on Saturday, citing five people familiar with the process. The Supervisory Board should therefore follow the proposal and propose Appel for election to the body at the Annual General Meeting on April 7th. At the same time there are talks about an early contract extension for Telekom CEO Timotheus Höttges. Both companies declined to comment on the report.

The term of office of the former Henkel boss Lehner, who has headed the Telekom supervisory body since 2008, will end with the shareholders' meeting next year.

The manager had already confirmed that a successor candidate was also being sought externally.

Rumors about Appel's professional future and a possible appointment to the top of the Telekom supervisory board have been making the rounds for a long time.

In industry circles it had been said that in view of the high federal share in both corporations it was difficult to imagine that Appel would remain head of the post office if he were to head the supervisory board of Telekom.

Elsewhere it was said, however, that Appel's predecessor at the top of the Post, Klaus Zumwinkel, was also the chairman of the Telekom supervisory board.

The federal government holds around 20.5 percent of the post through the state-owned development bank KfW.

At Telekom, 13.8 percent are owned by the federal government, and 16.6 percent are owned by KfW.

The former McKinsey consultant Appel has been with Deutsche Post since 2000.

In 2002 he became a member of the board of directors, and in 2008 he moved to the post of chairman of the board.

He is appointed until 2022.

A decision on his future at Post is expected soon.

Insiders say that Appel has not yet indicated any trend.

In the past, Appel had questions as to whether he was aiming for another term and always said that he enjoyed his job at the head of the Post.

In industry circles in recent weeks, given the ever new record results of the Post, it has not been ruled out that Appel could see his task as done and now look for new challenges.

Other insiders had pointed out that he had launched a billion-dollar digitization offensive at Swiss Post and that he wanted to finish this strategy in 2025.

In the Post Group, he had shown no willingness to turn his back on the company, insiders had reported. 

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