Ford reorganises European business to reset and redesign

10 December 2018

10 December 2018

Ford has announced a reorganisation of its lead staff together with changes in its business structure in Europe as it undergoes a fundamental reset and redesign.

In a statement, the company says that the organisational changes support Ford’s Sprint to 6 Reset & Redesign plan in Europe to achieve a 6% EBIT margin, with a view to investing only in those vehicles, services and segments that best support a long-term, sustainably profitable business.

The announcement could see a number of new models brought in as the business aims to capitalise on the rise of SUVs. However, it could also mean the company cutting some models. Rumours have persisted over the future of the Mondeo, with the vehicle being dropped from its US line-up.

Ford will also look to further develop its successful commercial vehicle business and will rely on partnerships to share burdens of cost and time. The company is already in talks with Volkswagen, which could see the two carmakers developing electric and autonomous vehicles together as well as working on van models.

To accelerate its redesign efforts, Ford is also appointing dedicated leaders to work with key stakeholders to guide its transformation in Germany and the UK, the company’s two largest markets in Europe, to help create a more fit and future-focused business.

Gunnar Herrmann is named executive director, Business Transformation, Ford of Germany, leading the implementation of Ford’s Sprint to 6 Reset & Redesign plan in Germany. This complements Herrmann’s existing role as chairman, Ford-Werke GmbH.

At the same time, Graham Hoare is appointed executive director, Business Transformation, Ford of Britain, leading the Sprint to 6 Reset & Redesign transition of Ford’s business in the UK.

′Gunnar and Graham bring vast expertise to their new roles leading our reset and redesign plan in their respective countries,’ said Steve Armstrong, group vice president and president, Europe, Middle East and Africa. ′Working closely with the rest of the European leadership team, they will play a key role in creating a long-term sustainably profitable business for the benefit of our customers, employees, partners and communities.’

As the latest step in the company’s restructuring of its global salaried workforce, these organisational changes also aim to increase spans of control, speed decision-making and reduce bureaucracy.

Hoare’s responsibilities as director, Global Vehicle Evaluation and Verification, Ford of Europe, will be assumed by Andrew Brumley, chief engineer, Vehicle Evaluation and Verification, Ford of Europe.

Herrmann’s responsibilities leading the Quality skill team will be assumed by Lee Walker, who is named director, Quality, Ford of Europe. At the same time, Kevin Reynolds, executive director, Strategy, Ford of Europe, is electing to retire after more than four decades with the company.

′Kevin has been central to driving the strategy of a number of key projects and changes we have implemented in our business in the past decade, including the spin-off of Jaguar Land Rover and the creation of some of our most successful joint ventures, said Armstrong.  ′We thank Kevin for his leadership during his more than 40 years at Ford, and we wish him all the best in his retirement.’