Darmstadt, Germany, May 8, 2014 – The Board of Partners of E. Merck KG, Darmstadt, Germany, today appointed Marcus Kuhnert as Group Chief Financial Officer of pharmaceuticals and chemicals company Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany. Kuhnert will become a member of the company’s Executive Board with unlimited personal liability as of Aug. 1, 2014.

Marcus Kuhnert (45) has been CFO of Henkel’s Laundry & Home Care business unit since 2010. With around 9.000 employees, the business unit generates annual sales of € 4.6 billion.

“With the appointment of Marcus Kuhnert, we’re completing our top management team with an internationally experienced finance manager. He will continue the realignment of our Finance organization, which we started three years ago, and keep up the successful communication with the capital markets,” said Johannes Baillou, Chairman of the Board of Partners of E. Merck KG, Darmstadt, Germany, the body that appoints the Executive Board members of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany. “He brings profound experience in the areas of transformation and efficiency enhancements to the table and is familiar with the challenges related to acquisitions and the integration of companies.”

With “Fit for 2018” Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, almost three years ago started the biggest transformation and growth program in its almost 350-year history. Through comprehensive efficiency measures and the introduction of a new leadership organization the company created the basis for profitable growth. In the next years, the focus will be on implementing internal and external growth initiatives, which includes the acquisition of AZ Electronic Materials, the supplier of high-tech materials for the electronics industry, which was completed last week.

Marcus Kuhnert was born in Chicago in 1968. Following his studies at the Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany, where he earned a combined master’s degree in business administration and mechanical engineering and a Ph.D. at the Institute for Finance and Controlling, he started his career as Corporate Controller at Henkel in 1999, moved to Investor Relations and as of 2003 headed Group Financial Statements & Subsidiary Controlling. As of 2007, Kuhnert worked in Singapore as Regional General Manager for Henkel-Adhesive in South East Asia and played a key role in integrating the largest acquisition in Henkel’s history. In 2008 he took charge of the CEO Office and Strategy Development as well as Corporate Communications ad interim as of 2009. Marcus Kuhnert is married with two children.

At Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, Kuhnert will succeed Matthias Zachert, who assumed the role of Chief Executive Officer of Lanxess on April 1.