Ford Motors changes leadership

Posted: May 23, 2017 in News
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Jim Hackett, new Ford Motors C.E.O

Ford has named the head of its driverless cars division, Jim Hackett as its chief executive in a sudden regime change, replacing Mack Fields. Ford said Mark Fields, who has run the company since July 2014, was retiring with immediate effect amid an overhaul of senior management.

Hackett runs the smart mobility unit that houses Ford’s autonomous vehicle projects and is close to the executive chair, Bill Ford Jr.Ford Jr, great-grandson of the company’s founder Henry, said Hackett was a “transformational leader” who would modernise the business by exploring areas such as artificial intelligence, robotics and 3D printing.

Ford Motors share value in Wall Street has stock has declined by 37% during Fields’ tenure.This year it was overtaken in stock market value by newcomer Tesla, which specializes in electric cars and is testing driverless vehicles, as investors focus on the future of transport. The over a century year-old company has also been outpaced by Silicon Valley and rivals such as General Motors, which posted rising first-quarter profit this year, while Ford’s earnings slumped. Hackett is favoured by William Ford Jr., Executive Chairman and great grandson of Ford Motors founder, to navigate the Company to profitability and restore investors’ confidence.

In February, Ford announced a $1bn investment over five years in the artificial intelligence software company Argo AI, as part of its attempt to make driverless cars a reality and Hackett will pilot this dream.

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