Odell named Ford of Europe's COO

Ford also names five group vice presidents

Stephen Odell

UPDATED: 3/14/08 2:56 pm EDT

Ford Motor today named Stephen Odell Ford of Europe's chief operating officer.

Odell, 53, will report to John Fleming, Ford of Europe CEO. Odell will assume responsibility for Ford of Europe's product development, manufacturing, purchasing, plus marketing, sales and service operations.

In his new job, Odell will lead Ford of Europe's growing role in developing global vehicle programs, Ford said in a statement.

Odell joined the company in 1980 and has held key positions at Ford of Europe, Mazda and Jaguar.

"Stephen has done an excellent job of reinvigorating our marketing, sales and service functions since he returned to Ford of Europe," Fleming said in the statement.

"As we move into a more intensive phase of our global transformation, now is the right time to make more of Stephen's extensive operational experience around the world. Giving him operational responsibility for Ford of Europe will help us raise our game as we take a prominent role in developing new vehicles globally."

Odell had served as vice president of marketing, sales and service at Ford of Europe since September 2005. Before that assignment, he was senior managing executive officer in charge of marketing, sales and customer services at Mazda Motor Corp. in Japan, where he was also a member of the board.

Odell joined Ford Motor Company in 1980 as a graduate trainee, Ford of Britain. He held several positions in sales and marketing in Britain and the U.S., before being appointed vice president marketing and sales, Jaguar North America, in 1997.

Ingvar Sviggum, 62, will replace Odell as Ford of Europe's vice president of marketing and sales. Sviggum will report to Odell.

Both appointments take effect April 1.

Ford also changed the job titles of some executives. From now on, Ford says that corporate officers with global responsibilities who report directly to Ford CEO Alan Mulally will be group vice presidents.

So effective April 1, the following five executives will be group vice presidents:

• Tony Brown, 52, previously senior vice president of global purchasing;

• Sue Cischke, 54, previously senior vice president of sustainability, environment and safety engineering;

• Bennie Fowler, 51, previously vice president of quality;

• David Leitch, 47, previously senior vice president and general counsel;

• Nick Smither, 49, previously vice president and chief information officer.

Amy Wilson and Philip Nussel contributed to this report

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