From 1 April 2003, Dr Michael Hepp has assumed responsibility for the Global Business Management Performance Chemicals for Leather, with head office in Ludwigshafen, Germany. He is responsible for the global activities of the unit, in particular worldwide strategy and coordination with the Europe, north and south America, and Asia regions with regard to production, R&D, marketing and sales.

Dr Hepp was born in Ludwigsburg, Germany, in 1958 and studied chemistry in Heidelberg and Bristol, UK. He completed his PhD in Heidelberg in 1987 and joined BASF Aktiengesellschaft in the same year. In 1998, after various posts in research, in production and on the staff of Industrial Chemicals, he became manager of the Textile Dyes Production sub department. In 1999, he took charge of Controlling and Central Services in what was then the BASF Colorants Operating Division.

In 2001 he was delegated to Brazil, where as head of the Performance Chemicals South America Regional Business Unit, with head office in São Paulo, he was also responsible for the leather chemicals business in South America.

Dr Hepp succeeded Hartwig Michels (39), who after five years with Performance Chemicals for Leather has taken over another leading position within the company.