Airbus Group SE COO Fabrice Brégier will step down in February 2018, putting him out of the running to succeed CEO Tom Enders, as the company battles with corruption allegations.
The board said it will be evaluating both internal and external executives for the CEO role when Enders' mandate expires in April 2019, in order to select a candidate in time for confirmation at the 2019 annual general meeting. Guillaume Faury, who is currently CEO of Airbus Helicopters, will succeed Brégier in his capacity as president of Airbus Commercial Aircraft, the company said.
Enders earlier told the board that he would not seek another term.
The announcement comes at a time when the aircraft manufacturer is facing corruption investigations in various jurisdictions. In October, German daily Der Spiegel alleged that Airbus had operated a London slush fund, distributing millions of dollars to accounts held by companies in tax havens.