Joseph Perkins, the executive who led Key Safety Systems' push to acquire Takata Corp. in a $1.6 billion deal that closed in April, has left the supplier to become the CEO of Albion, Ind.-based Busch Performance Group.
Perkins, 50, takes on the newly-created role for founder Nick Busche, who will continue to serve as the company's president and COO. Perkins will be based in Busche's technical center in Southfield.
"Joe's impact will be immediate as he develops and implements the short and long-term strategic initiatives of the company, while Nick will continue to oversee all aspects of operations, including a number of very important launches that will provide tremendous organic growth for the company," the board said in a news release.
Busche, a supplier of chassis components, employs nearly 1,500 at 16 locations in Michigan, Indiana, Ohio and Alabama. It expects to generate nearly $400 million in revenue this year, according to release.
At Key Safety, now known as Joyson Safety Systems, Perkins led the contentious battle to acquire Takata's global assets out of bankruptcy. The quest lasted nearly two years and created a combined $7 billion automotive safety systems supplier. The transaction ensured that Joyson is free from all legacy Takata liabilities, which are estimated in the billions of dollars thanks to faulty airbags that are linked to at least 20 deaths globally.
Prior to joining Key Safety in January 2016, Perkins was CFO for steering systems supplier Nexteer Automotive Corp.
He earned a bachelor's degree in accounting from Michigan State University and an MBA from Wayne State University.