Hydrogen Vehicle Systems (HVS) has appointed a new chairman of the Board. Prof. Dr. Utz Claassen joins the HVS team to support and direct the globalisation strategy for the UK’s first Hydrogen Fuel Cell truck OEM.

HVS CEO, Jawad Khursheed, comments, “I warmly welcome Utz to the team and look forward to his direction and support with our Group Growth Plan and Globalisation Strategy.”

Having operated on many boards and in CEO roles in several industries, Prof. Dr. Claassen brings with him a wealth of diverse international experience holding executive senior positions spanning companies such as Syntellix, Sartorius, Solar Millennium, EDF, EnBW, SEAT and Volkswagen. His academic qualifications include economics, management, and political science, and he has been the recipient of many high-profile orders, honours, and awards.

Prof. Dr. Claassen has an extensive list of achievements including taking the reins at Syntellix in 2018 and successfully co-leading a SPAC IPO in 2021 resulting in a $200m post-IPO company valuation. He was also previously CEO and Chairman of the Boards of Management of EnBW and of Sartorius AG where he led many M&A transactions, drove record sales and profits, and created billions of value for shareholders.

These positions were preceded by a very successful automotive career with Ford Motor Company and Volkswagen AG as well as automotive consultancy work with McKinsey & Company, Inc.

HVS Managing Director, Ian Palmer, said, “Having worked for Prof. Dr Claassen in both Ford and SEAT, I can vouch for his ability to bring visionary strategic thinking to the table and importantly combine this with the rigour to see plans successfully implemented.”

Commenting on his appointment, Prof. Dr. Claassen said, "The hydrogen world was always pre-destined to change and shape the automotive future. At the intersection between interdisciplinary and intercultural opportunities, HVS has a unique perspective to contribute towards both the evolution of drive technology as well as the disruption of old-school thinking with new open-minded solutions based on superior technology."