BERLIN (Reuters) -- Daimler sales chief Ola Kaellenius could be in line to become the carmaker's next CEO, but not for several years as incumbent Dieter Zetsche may have his contract extended by three years through 2019, a German magazine reported.
Citing unnamed sources at the company, Manager Magazin reported today Daimler Chairman Manfred Bischoff wants Kaellenius to become CEO as he pushes a younger generation of managers on to the executive board.
Yet Zetsche won the backing from Bischoff and labor unions at the carmaker's shareholder conference in April to have his contract extended.
Kaellenius, 46, should replace Zetsche when the top job is up for grabs again, the magazine said, adding that Bischoff's goal to gradually rejuvenate the management board could also lead to one of the two younger executives at Daimler's luxury division Mercedes-Benz -- Markus Schaefer and Klaus Zehender -- to rise to the group executive board.
A spokesman at Daimler declined comment.