Dr Axel Westerhaus, currently serving in the United States as head of polyethers in the Bayer Material Science subgroup, will assume responsibility for the fine chemicals business unit of Bayer Chemicals – to be called Lanxess from June 1, 2004. The fine chemicals business unit includes leather chemicals. He will succeed Dr Rudolf Hanko, who will leave the company on May 31, 2004 at his own request.

Westerhaus was born on August 28, 1951 in Osnabrück, Germany. After studying at the University of Bonn and obtaining his doctorate there, he completed a post-doctorate in the field of transition metal complexes in Vancouver, Canada. In 1984, he joined the research department of the inorganic pigments business unit of Bayer in Leverkusen. Important milestones in his career included the management of the Titanio do Brazil (Tibras), a joint venture in Brazil and the management of the former silicones business unit in Leverkusen. He was also part of the management team of GE Bayer Silicones, and head of technology in Bayer’s former rubber business group.

Dr Westerhaus is married and has three children.