Paris — Airbus is close to naming an outsider to replace finance chief Harald Wilhelm after board moves to overhaul top management in response to a corruption probe hastened his surprise resignation in May, people close to the matter said. British and French authorities are investigating the use of middlemen in jetliner sales and the European planemaker says it is also supplying information to US authorities. Wilhelm, 52, who is not due to leave Airbus until next year, has not been accused of wrongdoing, two people familiar with the investigation said. He initiated the planemaker’s decision in 2014 to rip up a decades-old system of middlemen supporting jet sales, opening the door to British and French investigators. Wilhelm’s departure is the most striking evidence yet of a board-driven clearout designed to help Airbus win more lenient judicial settlements by presenting a completely fresh face to anti-fraud agencies, four people familiar with the matter said. Airbus declined to comm...

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