Ex-Renault CEO Thierry Bolloré has been announced as the new CEO of Jaguar Land Rover, replacing Sir Ralf Speth.
The Frenchman will assume his new role on 10 September, following his dismissal from Groupe Renault’s board of directors in October last year.
Reports at the time suggested Renault was aiming to distance itself from disgraced former chief Carlos Ghosn and that Bolloré had a difficult relationship with bosses at partner brand Nissan.
The appointment was announced by Natarajan Chandrasekaran, chairman of JLR parent company Tata, who said: “I’m delighted to welcome Thierry to Jaguar Land Rover. An established global business leader with a proven track record of implementing complex transformations, Thierry will bring a wealth of experience to one of the most revered positions in the industry.”
Speth, who recently announced his departure from the CEO role after 10 years at the helm, will assume the role of non-executive vice chairman of JLR.
Bolloré brings more than 30 years of experience to his new position, having previously held management roles at tyre manufacturer Michelin and parts manufacturer Faurecia before joining the board at Groupe Renault in September 2012. He was named CEO on 24 January 2019 but served for only 10 months before being ousted in a surprise management shake-up.
During his brief tenure, he was keen to explore the possibility of a partnership with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, telling Autocar: “We need scale”. Talks broke down in June 2019, however, with the French government unwilling to dilute its share in Renault and Nissan accused of obstructing talks.
Commenting on the news, Bolloré said: “Jaguar Land Rover is known around the world for its peerless brand heritage, exquisite design and deep engineering integrity. It will be my privilege to lead this fantastic company through what continues to be the most testing time of our generation.
“Renowned for their passion and spirit, the people of Jaguar Land Rover are the driving force behind its success. I couldn’t be more excited to join the team continuing to shape the future of this iconic company.”