After more details from compliance investigations came out: Springer’s CEO Mathias Doepfner apologizes to employees and those affected

2 min readOct 31, 2021

Exclusive: Here is the full speech the CEO gave in an internal meeting with Bild’s employees

Axel Springer CEO Mathias Doepfner

By Marvin Schade, Founding Editor

Following the dismissal of Bild’s editor-in-chief Julian Reichelt after the New York Times and other media came out with more details from the compliance investigations against him, Axel Springer’s CEO Mathias Doepfner addressed his employees in an internal meeting on Friday, October 22. He also apologized for the first time for the stress and strain of the past months — also to those affected by Reichelt’s abuse of power.

Medieninsider documents the speech of the Springer CEO. For international audience we have translated it from German into English. Click here for the German version.

Döpfner’s speech followed two internal appearances in recent days that were poorly received by Springer’s staff. According to the staff, the Springer CEO had talked too much about Julian Reichelt, his merits and Döpfner’s personal feelings. In the process, he had not said a word about the stress and strain of the past months to the people who were affected by the editor-in-chief’s abuse of power (Döpfner on the Reichelt case: “Nothing in my professional career has ever shaken me so much and made me personally so sad”).

He has now attempted to make up for this and apologized for the events of the past few weeks, and seems to be noticeably affected. For the first time, he also admitted that he and the Springer board had outright accepted Reichelt’s lies. The CEO accused himself of having allowed himself to be lied to. He admitted: He should have parted with Reichelt earlier.

Here is Mr. Doepfners full speech, in which he also addresses his controversial GDR quote as well as the role of whistleblowers in the compliance investigations.

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