Ford boss Hackett resigns – Farley takes over
Another change of boss at the US auto giant Ford: On October 1st, Jim Farley takes over the helm in Dearborn. His predecessor will step down after a good three years in the management position. This could be an advantage for the German Ford locations, says an expert.
The troubled US auto giant Ford is repositioning its top management for the second time in a good three years. The company announced on Tuesday that CEO Jim Hackett (65), who has only been in office since May 2017, is stepping down. With effect from October 1st, top manager Jim Farley (58), who is currently responsible for day-to-day business on the board, was promoted to his successor.
Farley has been with Ford since 2007. Before that, he worked for the Japanese car maker Toyota for 17 years, where he was most recently responsible for sales and marketing for Toyota’s luxury brand Lexus.
The change in personnel shows how difficult Ford is still with the change in the automotive industry from classic sheet metal bending to future technologies such as autonomous driving and electromobility. The group is undergoing a profound restructuring, Hackett actually started as a major modernizer. His predecessor, Mark Fields, had already left the top post after just three years.
New boss was responsible for Europe for a long time
According to automotive expert Stefan Bratzel, the surprising change at the top of the group could be an advantage for the German Ford locations in Cologne and Saarlouis. “The new Ford boss Jim Farley was responsible for Europe for years and therefore has more understanding of the German car market,” said the professor of automotive economics at the University of Applied Sciences in Bergisch Gladbach the “Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger”. However, according to his assessment, little is likely to change in the austerity course for the Ford plant in Cologne. Farley will presumably step up the austerity efforts again.
For Germany, Ford recently reported “clear signs of a market recovery”. The binding orders are now back at more than 80 percent of the targets set before Corona. In the first half of 2020, however, Ford had only registered a little more than 84,000 new registrations in Germany. That was 41.4 percent less than in the same period last year. Between mid-March and early May, Ford had to pause production at its European locations for more than six weeks due to the pandemic.
tht / dpa