DETROIT - It has been J.T. Battenberg III's mission to forge 'Team Delphi' from the collection of former General Motors units that is Delphi Automotive Systems Corp.
The chairman, CEO and president of the world's largest automotive supplier took another step toward that goal last week by restructuring his management team. Battenberg wants more collaboration among the company's core business units and greater responsiveness to customer and market demands.
Five current officers become corporate executive vice presidents in the reorganization. The promotions more clearly define Delphi's hierarchy and put in place a line of possible successors to Battenberg, 56.
3 oversee core units
Three of the new corporate executives will oversee Delphi's core business sectors: dynamics and propulsion; safety, thermal and electrical architecture; and electronics and mobile communications. The other two will lead corporate staff operations. Two of the five, Don Runkle and Alan Dawes, will join Battenberg as the only Delphi employees on the board of directors.
Other senior officers have been reassigned to one of the five corporate executive vice presidents, reducing Battenberg's list of direct reports from 18 to 10. The total senior officer count rises by one, to 22.
All appointments are effective Jan. 1, 2000.
Analyst David Garrity of Dresdner Kleinwort Benson in New York said streamlining management is a plus for a company of Delphi's size - about 200,000 employees worldwide - especially if it helps Delphi meet its goals since its spin-off from GM earlier this year. That includes expanding its non-GM business.
Delphi spokesman Steve Gaut said the management changes put the people in place to explore long-term strategies as the company shifts its focus from seven individual operating divisions to three sectors. The divisions will remain individual profit centers, but results will be reported by sector.
Breaking Down Barriers
The sector presidents will concentrate on breaking down barriers between operations. The goal is integrated product development through common engineering and manufacturing processes, Gaut said. The realignment of corporate staff responsibilities is expected to produce greater efficiencies. Major appointments include:
Rodney O'Neal, 46, to president of the safety, thermal and electrical architecture sector and corporate executive vice president. O'Neal also will guide Delphi's relationship with Ford Motor Co. as 'customer champion' for Delphi's business with Ford. James Bertrand, 42, succeeds O'Neal as president of Delphi Interior Systems. Bertrand was vice president in charge of operations and GM customer champion.
Runkle, 54, to president of the dynamics and propulsion sector and corporate executive vice president. Runkle also will lead a cross-sector manufacturing task team, and retain his role as customer champion for DaimlerChrysler. Runkle had been president of Delphi Energy and Engine Management Systems. Guy Hachey, 44, is the new president of the combined entity, now named Delphi Energy and Chassis Systems.
David Wohleen, 49, to president of the electronics and mobile communications sector. Wohleen will continue to be president of Delphi Delco Electronics Systems. He becomes customer champion for GM and GM Service Parts Operations. He will also lead a team exploring cross-divisional engineering opportunities.
Alan Dawes, 45, to executive vice president and CFO. Dawes had been vice president and CFO. In his new role, he adds responsibility for mergers and acquisitions and information systems worldwide.
Mark Weber, 51, to executive vice president of operations, production control and logistics, human resource management and corporate affairs. Weber had been vice president of human resources. He is succeeded by Kevin Butler, 44, who was general director of human resources at Delphi Delco Electronics Systems.