Ford Motor Company (F) announced Thursday that chief financial officer Bob Shanks will be retiring later this year. He will be succeeded by Tim Stone, who had worked at e-commerce giant Amazon (AMZN) for about 20 years in various financial roles. Most recently, he served social media firm Snap (SNAP) for a short period.
The other management changes include the retirement of Peter Fleet as president of International Markets Group early next month. He will be replaced by Mark Ovenden. The division, which oversees around 100 foreign markets, is scheduled to become a reporting business unit by early next year.
In addition, Stuart Rowley and Steven Armstrong have been appointed as the president and chairman of Ford of Europe, respectively. Birgit Behrendt, who has decided to retire as VP of Joint Ventures-Alliances and Commercial Affairs in Europe, will continue to serve as a member of the Ford Werke Supervisory Board.
The other management changes include the retirement of Peter Fleet as president of International Markets Group early next month
Stone will begin his stint in Ford as a company officer on April 15, and take over as the finance chief on June 1, reporting to CEO Jim Hackett. “Bob’s leadership was integral to Ford’s comeback during the great recession, and he has been an invaluable partner as we transform Ford to succeed in the next era,” said Hackett.
By bringing a veteran from the technology industry to head the finance department, Ford intends to remain relevant in all spheres of its business in the fast-changing auto industry, which has been witnessing the integration of technology in a big way.
The crucial management change comes at a time when Hackett’s regime faces investors’ scrutiny for the unimpressive performance of the company’s stock. Meanwhile, there is speculation that Ford might be going for an all-out transformation of its traditional business model.
On the formation of International Markets Group, the management said the unit will have a networked team focused on leveraging local customer insights and the company’s global exposure. The group, which enjoys a leading market position in compact pick-ups and commercial Vehicles, will be focusing on the emerging markets.
In a move aimed at strengthening its foothold in the European market, Ford of Europe earlier this year unveiled a ‘transformation strategy’ for the Ford brand. The initiative will focus on revamping the company’s vehicle portfolio, increasing volume in the high-growth segments and expanding the reach in underperforming markets.
After starting the week on a high note, Ford shares pared the gains and leveled off later. The stock traded slightly higher in the early hours of Thursday’s regular session.