DETROIT - General Motors has hired another brand manager from the outside and put a GM veteran in charge of the EV1 electric vehicle.
Tim Roush, 38, whose experience includes marketing Gerber baby food and Prell shampoo, becomes brand manager for the Oldsmobile Intrigue, replacing Ken Stewart, 43.
Stewart, who joined GM as an engineer in 1979, becomes brand manager for advanced technology vehicles, including the EV1 and its other alternative fuel vehicles.
He succeeds Frank Pereira, who resigned in January.
GM brand managers direct the positioning and marketing of a vehicle nameplate. A portion of their compensation is tied to their brands' profits and losses.
Roush joins a group of outside brand managers hired by GM since 1995 to jump-start its brand management efforts.
The group includes his new boss, Karen Francis, Olds-mobile's general marketing manager. Francis also was Roush's boss during the early 1990s at Berol Corp., a writing utensil company.
Roush comes from Fremont, Mich.-based Novartis Corp., which sells Gerber baby food. Before that, he worked in marketing at Berol and Procter & Gamble Co.
Roush thinks his ability to 'climb into consumers' heads' will help him market the Intrigue.
Through June, sales for the car are down 16.2 percent from the first half of 1998, its first full year of production.
Said Roush: 'This is maybe the biggest leap in a succession of leaps I've taken in my career.'
Stewart was the brand manager for the Intrigue since 1996, a year before it was launched.
He joined Oldsmobile in 1990 and served as a zone manager and strategic marketing manager for the division.
Stewart's predecessor, Pereira, was a marketing manager in the software industry before joining GM in 1997 to market the EV1.
GM did not disclose the reason for his resignation.