Ford Motor Company unveiled that Jim Hackett plans to retire from the company, he had led the company’s transformation since 2017. Jim Farley has been named the company’s new president and CEO and will join the board of directors, effective from October 1, 2020. Mr Hackett and Farley will work together on a smooth leadership transition over the next two months.
Under Mr Hackett, Ford moved aggressively into the new era of smart vehicles and drove a deeper focus on customers’ wants and needs. At the same time, Ford improved the fitness of the base business, restructuring operations, invigorating the product portfolio and reducing bureaucracy.
“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,” expressed Bill Ford, Ford’s executive chairman.
Mr Farley collaborated with Hackett over the past three years to develop and execute Ford’s Creating Tomorrow Together plan to transform Ford into a higher growth, higher margin business.
“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 Mr Ford.
Mr Hackett will continue as a special advisor to Ford through March of 2021 stated “The time is right to pass the mantle of leadership to Jim Farley. My goal when I took on the CEO role was to prepare Ford to win in the future. The hardest thing for a proud, long lived company to do is change to meet the challenges of the world it’s entering rather than the world it has known. I’m very proud of how far we have come in creating a modern Ford and I am very optimistic about the future. 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.”
Mr Farley joined Ford in 2007, in April 2019, Farley was chosen to lead Ford’s New Businesses, Technology & Strategy team, helping the company determine how to capitalize on powerful forces reshaping the industry such as software platforms, connectivity, AI, automation and new forms of propulsion. He was named chief operating officer in February of this year.
“I love Ford and I am honored by the opportunity to serve and create value for Ford’s employees, customers, dealers, communities and all of our stakeholders. Jim Hackett has laid the foundation for a really vibrant future and we have made tremendous progress in the past three years. I am so excited to work together with the whole Ford team to realize the full potential of this great company in a new era,” said Mr Farley.