Mulally Staying at Ford Longer Than Expected, Succession Plan Now Very Clear

Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F) is trying to signal that any future CEO and leadership change is going to go smoothly. Its star CEO, Alan Mulally, is now said to be staying on president and chief executive officer through at least 2014. This is longer than what the investment community was thinking, and that is a good thing with Mulally having kept Ford out of the bailout line and getting its books in order before the recession.

Mark Fields, who has been considered the key potential successor to Mulally, is now being named as Ford's new chief operating officer. The effective date is December 1, 2012, and he will effectively be taking over all business units. Ford's automotive business units will report to Fields. These include the following: North America and South America; Europe, Middle East and Africa; and Asia Pacific. As a part of this release, the company is naming heads of each region as well. Fields has spent the past seven years as executive vice president and president of The Americas.

Today's report said:

Mulally will continue leading the long-term strategic development of the One Ford plan and its continuous improvement. Fields will be responsible for all business operations. … Fields will continue to report to Mulally, as will the company's chief financial officer, general counsel and group vice president of Human Resources and Corporate Services.

Ford shares were already up yesterday on earnings and this news is currently worth another 0.5% to the upside to $11.22 so far this morning. The 52-week range is $8.82 to $13.05.

JON C. OGG


Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Autos, Corporate Governance, Management Change Tagged: F

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