Rorsted defends top position ahead of McDermott and Weimer


CEO Ranking: Economic success is the strongest image driver

-  Kasper Rorsted (Adidas) leads the latest CEO image ranking, Bill McDermott (SAP) improves to second place; Theodor Weimer (Deutsche Börse) holds third place

-  Werner Baumann (Bayer) jumps from 14th to sixth after successful takeover of Monsanto

Kasper Rorsted (Adidas) continues his successful media start into 2018 in the second quarter and defends the top position in UNICEPTA's image ranking. Under the CEO, "Adidas is leaving the competitors in the US behind him", as the Dane "has finally created conquered the shelves of American sports retailers", states the Handelsblatt. In addition, the medium positively attests that "the sports group has improved in every respect and achieved new records in 2017". BILD sees Rorsted as the "driver" of the share, which has climbed temporarily "to a new all-time high".

Bill McDermott (SAP) takes a significant step forward, improving from fifth to second place in the ranking compared to first quarter 2018. The American convinces journalists above all with the strong financial figures of the IT group. Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung states that McDermott "more than doubled sales, profit and share price during his eight-year term of office". According to the Handelsblatt, the CEO "has given the SAP force back its hunger for growth with the oldest management method in the world: communication, communication, communication".

Theodor Weimer (Deutsche Börse) defends his position from the previous ranking and holds third place. Although only in office since the beginning of January, the journalists have painted the image of a capable CEO who fits in well with Deutsche Börse. Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung praises Weimer for "convincing the insecure employees, winning over the shaken financial centre Frankfurt" and sums up that he has done his job “very well from the start". The Handelsblatt reaches a similar verdict: his start as head of the stock exchange has been "successful".

Following the successful acquisition of Monsanto, Bayer CEO Werner Baumann has made a major leap from 14th place in the first quarter to sixth place. "Baumann delivered" states Süddeutsche Zeitung. For Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, he is the "clever threader of a billion-euro merger".

Fourth and fifth places go to Carsten Spohr (Lufthansa) and Elmar Degenhart (Continental). According to Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Spohr turned Lufthansa "from a problem child to a showcase candidate among the Dax companies within a few years".

Elmar Degenhart, according to Süddeutsche Zeitung, "something like the Swabian messiah of the industry", has taken the Group out of the crisis and the share price into new dimensions since taking office.


For its CEO-Ranking, UNICEPTA analyzed some 16,550 reports published between January and June 2018 by leading German media outlets as well as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and The Economist. The ranking is based on the results of the UNICEPTA "DAX-Benchmark". With this tool, the Smart Media Intelligence provider continually observes the media presence of all Dax-listed groups and their CEOs as well as the tonality of the reporting.


UNICEPTA Medienanalyse GmbH is a leading global provider for smart media intelligence in innovations/digital consulting, media monitoring, media analysis and research/consulting. Around 700 experts continuously structure the news flow – both around the clock and around the world.  UNICEPTA compiles and presents highly relevant information from print and online media, TV, radio and social-media sources. This day-to-day work serves as a platform for the company to provide analysis and research-based advice for issues related to strategic communication.


Wolf-Dieter Rühl
UNICEPTA Medienanalyse GmbH
Head of Research Services
Salierring 47-53
50677 Köln

phone  0221 9902 110
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email    wolf.ruehl@unicepta.com
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