Business

Ford, struggling in a changing industry, replaces its CEO

Ford, struggling in a changing industry, replaces its CEO

Ford, Struggling in a Changing Industry, Replaces Its CEO

Ford Motor said its chief executive, Jim Hackett, will retire October 1, ending a three-year run in which the automaker has worked with mixed results to streamline its operations and focus its business on electric cars, trucks and sport-utility vehicles.

Hackett, 65, will be succeeded by James D. Farley Jr., who had been named chief operating officer in February.

"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," said William Clay Ford Jr., Ford's executive chairman. The company, he added, is becoming "much more nimble."

Hackett, a former chief executive of Steelcase, an office furniture manufacturer that is much smaller and less complex, was named to the top job at Ford in May 2017, as the company's business was slumping.

He promised to revitalise Ford's operations and steer the company toward vehicles that would generate profits and invest in emerging technologies like electric and self-driving vehicles.

Retirement

The company is starting to introduce some of the models developed under Hackett, including a redesigned F-150 pickup truck and the Mustang Mach E, an electric SUV styled to resemble the storied sports car.

But, so far, the turnaround has had little effect on the company's bottom line and stock price. Ford shares were trading at $11 when Hackett arrived. The stock was trading at $6.88 Tuesday morning, up about 3% after news of his retirement.

Investors value Ford at about $27 billion, just one-tenth the market capitalization of Tesla, the electric automaker that makes far fewer cars and has been around only since 2003.

Farley, 58, joined Ford in 2007 from Toyota Motor and has held a variety of jobs, including running the company's marketing, its European operations and a new business strategy group.