||acobs was joint chairman of the board from August 1996 to April 2002, according to Adecco's Web site. Jacobs rejoined the board as co-chairman again in 2004, Schafmeister said.
Born in the German city of Bremen though now a Swiss citizen, Jacobs made his fortune from chocolate.
In 1982, he merged his company with Interfood, gaining the Toblerone brand. Eight years later, he earned 3 billion Swiss francs ($2.3 billion at current prices) from the sale of Jacobs Suchard AG to New York-based Philip Morris Inc. Jacobs also in 1998 led the initial public offering of Barry Callebaut, now the world's largest supplier of bulk chocolate.
Adecco was created after Adia Interim SA, rescued by Jacobs from near-bankruptcy in 1993, combined with Ecco SA, founded by Foriel-Destezet, in a transaction valued at $2.2 billion.
The company's board of directors will decide whether Juergen Dormann, the new vice president, will take over, the NZZ am Sonntag paper reported today, citing Jacobs.
Adecco is also thinking about listing its shares in the U.S. The company is looking at the ``advantages and disadvantages'' and has not yet reached a decision, Jacobs told the paper.