Manufacturing AUTOMATION

Schneider Electric names new global EVP of industrial automation

May 20, 2021
By Manufacturing AUTOMATION

Schneider Electric has appointed Barbara Frei as the new executive vice-president of its industrial automation global business.

Barbara Frei. Photo: Schneider Electric

Frei takes over from Peter Herweck, who was appointed as CEO of AVEVA, a Schneider Electric company for industrial software.

Having served as Schneider Electric’s executive vice-president for Europe operations since 2019, Frei retains her role as a member of the company’s executive committee.

Based in Zurich, she will report directly to Jean-Pascal Tricoire, Schneider Electric’s chairman and CEO. Frei will be charged with enabling Schneider Electric customers and partners to benefit from next-generation sustainable, resilient and people-centric Industries of the Future solutions, and strengthening the call for universal automation.


Frei brings a blend of business and engineering acumen to this role, as well as a deep understanding of the telecommunications industry. She is committed to continuing close collaboration with all of Schneider’s strategic partners, including AVEVA.

She joined Schneider Electric in 2016 as country president of Germany and in 2017 expanded her scope as zone president of DACH (covering Germany, Austria and Switzerland).

Frei started her career as a development project manager for motors and drives at ABB Switzerland, going on to hold various senior management positions in the ABB Group, including regional responsibility as country manager for the Czech Republic and regional manager for the Mediterranean area in Italy.

Frei holds a doctorate in electrical machines from ETH Zurich and an MBA from IMD Lausanne. She also serves on the board of directors of Swisscom.

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