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Ford denies report that Volvo boss will head European operations

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Ford denies report that Volvo boss will head European operations

Paul McVeigh

Automotive News Europe -- May 24, 2010 06:01 CET

A report that the head of Volvo Car Corp., Stephen Odell, will become CEO of Ford of Europe is "speculation," Ford said.

Germany's Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung said Odell will replace current Ford of Europe CEO John Fleming when Volvo's sale to Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, China's largest private carmaker and parent of Hong Kong-listed Geely Automobile, is completed.

Fleming, who is also responsible for global manufacturing at Ford, will relinquish the European CEO role to concentrate on manufacturing, the newspaper said, citing company sources.

A Ford spokesman said Odell will remain at Volvo until the deal to sell the Swedish carmaker to Geely is completed and reports on his future role were speculation.

"The future structure of the Volvo management post-sale completion will be a decision for the new owners," the spokesman told Automotive News Europe.

Odell was appointed Volvo CEO in October 2008. Before that he was Ford of Europe's chief operating officer, responsible for product development, manufacturing, purchasing, and marketing, sales and service operations.

London-born Odell joined Ford in 1980 and had stints as Jaguar North America's head of sales and marketing, and as Mazda North America's chief operations officer and president of Mazda Europe.

Fleming, who oversees the global operations of 105 Ford assembly, stamping and powertrain plants, joined Ford in 1967 at the company's Halewood factory near Liverpool. In his current role as Ford of Europe's chairman and CEO, he is responsible for Ford of Europe, Volvo and Ford's export operations and global growth initiatives.

Read more: http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100524/ANE/100529959/1193#ixzz0osl0Tiov

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