In 1999 the Executive Board of Mannesmann took the decision to focus the group on telecommunications. The industrial activities were consolidated within Atecs Mannesmann AG, with the intention of floating these units independently on the stock market over the coming years. At the start of the year 2000, however, the British telecommunications company Vodafone secured a majority interest in Mannesmann, putting an end to the company’s corporate independence. Subsequently, Mannesmann AG and its telecoms activities were absorbed into the Vodafone Group. Mannesmann AG held its last AGM on August 22, 2001, among the resolutions was passed was a change of name to Vodafone. The companies amalgamated within Atecs Mannesmann AG were sold to Siemens AG. Some of these activities were integrated into the Siemens Group, while the remaining businesses were sold on. The Mannesmann Group was dissolved.
The year 2000, however, also offered fresh prospects as Salzgitter AG acquired a majority interest in Mannesmannröhren-Werke AG. With the integration of the tubes company into the Salzgitter Group, Mannesmann’s traditional steel tubes business, which in the 1990s within the Mannesmann Group had frequently been upstaged by newer divisions, now once again acquired strategic importance. As a core business within this Steel Group, the potential and the enduring modernity of steel tubes are clearly evident. The Mannesmann brand lives on in its original field.