SAP boss Bill McDermott lost an eye in a freak accident that almost killed him, it emerged on Wednesday.
The 54-year-old CEO was walking down stairs at night carrying a glass of water in his left hand when he slipped and landed on the tumbler. McDermott, who was staying with his brother in the US at the time of the spill in July, almost bled to death after cutting up his face and shattering his eye socket in the midnight fall.
At the end of August, doctors couldn't save his left eye despite their best efforts, German magazine WirtschaftsWoche reported this week. McDermott, who was born in New York and raised on Long Island, will next month return to Germany, where software giant SAP is headquartered.
The chief exec told the German daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung: “I’m still alive, and that’s not a given after such a bad accident. This can happen to anyone. It’s important to stand up after you’ve fallen down.”
SAP chairman and cofounder Hasso Plattner added in a separate interview: "He almost bled to death, and was unconscious ... he told us so last week."
Plattner and other company bigwigs drew up a contingency plan for the future leadership of SAP just in case McDermott quit as a result of his injuries, but in the words of the chairman, "Bill is on the mend and, from October, can fly again."
McDermott, who joined SAP in 2002, was made CEO of the biz in 2014 after sharing the role with Jim Hagemann Snabe since 2010. ®