Morning Briefing Global Edition The Albrecht Family Feud

Handelsblatt sits down with the co-owner of Aldi Nord in a rare interview about the divided dynasty facing a tough future, and Europe's private jet industry zeros in on a surprising new target group in Germany.
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Donald Trump plans to travel to Britain on June 24, the day after the country’s referendum on European Union membership. The Republican presidential hopeful has sided with the Brexit group. The trip could shore up international support for Trump's own isolationist foreign policy stance. Supporters of a united Europe are appalled but should thank Trump for his frontal assault. He is the best argument yet for Britons to stay in the E.U.

 

If the Albrecht family has held anything sacred over the years, it is secrecy. In a rare interview, the son of Theo Albrecht, the co-founder of discount supermarket chain Aldi, breaks the clan’s vow of silence. Theo Albrecht Jr., now co-owner of Aldi Nord and one of Germany’s richest men, talks about his fears for the future and a nasty dispute with his brother’s widow: “My sister-in-law’s behavior in public is a burden for our company.” This interview is a lesson for all family entrepreneurs on what not to do.

 

Today, the governing council of the European Central Bank meets not in their usual Frankfurt clubhouse, but in Vienna. Despite the change of scenery, the council is not expected to venture from its ultra-loose monetary policy line. Eurozone members have become accustomed to printing press financing in the court of Mario Draghi, and no rebels dare question its wisdom. George Bernard Shaw had it right when he appealed for more nonconformists: “What we need are some crazy people; look where the normal people led us.”

 

Is Poland’s sovereignty vulnerable? Questions of NATO troops and a hypothetical Russian invasion will dominate a two-day security summit held by The Atlantic Council that starts today in Wroclaw. High-ranking Polish, European and American defense experts will discuss troop and equipment stations, and address Poland’s calls for a more robust NATO to counter its eastern neighbor. Germany’s foreign minister on Tuesday struck a more conciliatory tone towards Russia, to the ire of its neighbor's right-wing leaders. Indeed, Poland may be vulnerable after all.

 

With high levels of investment and painful job cuts, Ergo CEO Markus Riess hopes to take the insurer back into the black this year. By the end of 2020, Ergo wants to cut 1,835 jobs in Germany. After years of mismanagement under Riess' predecessor, there seems to be no alternative to the drastic treatment. At Ergo, things must get worse before they get better.

 

Demand for private jets just isn’t what it used to be before the 2008 financial crisis. The luxury aircraft industry reported a staggering 16 percent drop in sales in the first quarter, its worst since 2011. Billions in losses have prompted buyers like ThyssenKrupp and E.ON to ditch their own fancy fleets. But jet makers have their eye on a new group of buyers in Germany – a famously frugal bunch you’d least expect. Who is it? Find out here.