October 25, 2019 / 8:55 AM / 23 days ago

UPDATE 2-Sweden's Sandvik poaches new CEO from lockmaker Assa Abloy

(Adds analyst comment, detail)

By Johannes Hellstrom

STOCKHOLM, Oct 25 (Reuters) - Swedish metal-cutting tools and mining gear maker Sandvik has named Assa Abloy’s Stefan Widing to take over as CEO when Bjorn Rosengren leaves for Swiss robotics company ABB.

Widing joins Sandvik at a time when industrial demand has begun to slow and the company is cutting thousands of staff.

Though earnings have remained resilient, outgoing CEO Rosengren’s drive to decentralise the group in recent years has yet to take full effect.

“Stefan definitely has the capabilities needed to continue the decentralised way of working and to ensure Sandvik’s future development,” Chairman Johan Molin said in a statement.

Widing is currently heading HID Global Corporation, a technology division within Assa Abloy, the world’s largest lockmaker. HID Global produces high-tech products ranging from biometric readers and electronic identity cards to RFID tracking tags.

“This is a strong appointment in our view,” Citi analysts wrote in a research note, adding that Widing is highly respected among industrials investors and had been seen as a rising star within Assa Abloy for several years.

Sandvik is also at the start of a technology transformation amid increasing take-up of electric and automated mining equipment as well as early preparations for additive manufacturing.

Widing will start his new role no later than April, Sandvik said. (Reporting by Johannes Hellstrom Editing by Johan Ahlander and David Goodman)

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