A major changing of the guard has just happened at Ford Motor Company. After serving as CEO and president of Ford for three years, the automaker has announced that Jim Hackett will be retiring from the company soon.
Under Hackett's leadership, the company says they reorganized themselves, introduced new products in the portfolio, moved aggressively in making smarter vehicles, and reduced internal bureaucracy. Hackett oversaw the development and launch of several key products which include the Mustang Mach-E, all-new F-150, the next-generation Explorer, and the return of the Bronco name.
“I am very grateful to Jim Hackett for all he has done to modernize Ford and prepare us to compete and win in the future. Our new product vision – led by the Mustang Mach-E, new F-150, and Bronco family – is taking shape. We now have compelling plans for electric and autonomous vehicles, as well as full vehicle connectivity. And we are becoming much more nimble, which was apparent when we quickly mobilized to make life-saving equipment at the outset of the pandemic,” said Bill Ford, Executive Chairman of Ford Motor Company.
Set to replace Hackett as CEO is Jim Farley who is currently serving as the company's Chief Operating Officer (COO). Ford is confident that Farley will be able to bring more to the table as he collaborated closely with Hackett during his 3-year tenure. Hackett assumed command of Ford after the tenure of Mark Fields as CEO; a time pundits consider to be fairly tumultuous for the Ford brand.
“Jim Farley matches an innate feel for cars and customers with great instincts for the future and the new technologies that are changing our industry. Jim’s passion for great vehicles and his intense drive for results are well known, and I have also seen him develop into a transformational leader with the determination and foresight to help Ford thrive into the future,” added Ford.
Farley first joined the Blue Oval back in 2007 as Global Head of Marketing and Sales and went on to lead Lincoln, Ford South Africa, Ford of Europe, and all Ford global markets in successive roles. Then in 2019, Farley was assigned to lead Ford's New Businesses, Technology, and Strategy Team, helping the company determine how to capitalize on software platforms, wireless connectivity, A.I., and new forms of powertrain technologies.
Hackett, who will continue to serve as a special advisor to Ford until March 2021, stated that he is confident that Jim Farley will be able to guide the company.
“I have worked side-by-side with Jim Farley for the past three years and have the greatest confidence in him as a person and a leader. He has been instrumental in crafting our new product portfolio and redesigning our businesses around the world. He is also a change agent with a deep understanding of how to lead Ford in this new era defined by smart vehicles in a smart world,” said Hackett.
Hackett will officially step down as CEO this October 1, 2020, with Farley set to fill the role immediately.