Fiat Chrysler Names Jeep Chief Manley To Replace CEO Marchionne

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCAU) named the head of its Jeep and Ram brands, Mike Manley, as chief executive officer to replace Sergio Marchionne. Marchionne had to step down after 14 years due to complications from shoulder surgery.

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The abrupt departure of the executive who saved both Fiat and Chrysler and then forged a profitable trans-Atlantic operation also required a new leader at Ferrari (RACE). Ferrari named Philip Morris International (PM) veteran Louis Camilleri as its new CEO.

 

Manley, a 54-year-old Briton, is behind the extraordinary success of the Jeep brand’s global expansion. He will start immediately, according to a Fiat Chrysler statement on Saturday. Manley joined Chrysler in the U.K. in 2000 when the carmaker was part of Daimler. He was named head of Jeep at the time of Fiat’s acquisition in 2009, leading the transformation of the iconic American brand into a cash machine. Analysts estimate that Jeep alone could be worth the entire $30 billion market value of Fiat Chrysler.

Marchionne’s health has “worsened significantly in recent hours,” and he will be unable to return to work, the company said. His illness accelerated the timeline for a decision on succession that was already seen as a crossroads for the company. Who would run Fiat Chrysler  was just the first of a number of pivotal choices — like whether to remain independent — facing Chairman John Elkann, heir to the founding Agnelli family.

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“I am profoundly saddened to learn of Sergio’s state of health,” Elkann said in a separate statement. “It is a situation that was unthinkable until a few hours ago, and one that leaves us all with a real sense of injustice.”

At the April general meeting, Elkann and Marchionne both said that Fiat Chrysler is now strong enough to survive by its own and doesn’t need a partner anymore. Fiat reiterated this view today. Manley and his team will proceed with the implementation of the 2018-2022 business plan as presented on 1 June this year, that will further assure FCA’s “strong and independent” future.

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The post Fiat Chrysler Names Jeep Chief Manley To Replace CEO Marchionne appeared first on Investor's Business Daily.

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