Ford CEO Jim Hackett Tapped Jim Farley to Retire as Stock Lags

Ford Motor CEO and President Jim Hackett will retire unexpectedly amid a $ 11 billion restructuring plan that has failed to impress Wall Street and investors.

Hackett, 65, will succeed his successor, Jim Farley, Ford’s chief operating officer, effective October 1. Farlett, 58, will work with Hackett on “smooth leadership transition over the next two months”, according to the company.

The leadership shakeup will make Farley the automaker’s fourth CEO since the Great Recession, which nearly bankrupted the automaker. Ford shares rose nearly 3% during premarket trading on Tuesday after the announcement.

Since beginning to lead Ford in May 2017, Hackett, a former CEO of the furniture company Steelcase, has done little to instill confidence in the automaker on Wall Street – a reason his predecessor Mark Fields has spent three years Was ruled out after a short tenure. .

Jim Hackett, Ford Motor Company’s incoming chief executive, left, and Ford Motor Company executive chairman Bill Ford, laugh during an event on May 22, 2017 at the company’s headquarters in Dearborn, Michigan.

Jeff Kowalski | Bloomberg Getty Images

As of Monday’s close, Ford’s shares were down 39.7% to $ 6.69 under the hack. The stock, which has a market value of $ 26.1 billion, is down 28% in 2020.

Hackett had previously expressed no interest in retiring. In February, amid an executive shakeup, he said, “I plan to be in this job.” He cited a close relationship with Farley which has been promising to the company.

Hackett has been criticized for his transparency and leadership and for the execution of his multirestructuring scheme that aims to better position the automaker for all electric and autonomous vehicles.

He will continue as the company’s special advisor until March 2021, according to Ford.

“I am grateful to all those who prepared Ford to modernize and compete and win in the future,” Ford’s executive chairman, Bill Ford, said in a release.

The former furniture executive favored company founder Henry Ford’s great-grandson, Ford, in Silicon Valley because of his reputation and inspiring skills.

Hackett had chosen Farley over Joe Heinrich, a longtime Ford executive who left the automaker amid executive restructuring, as his successor in February.

Farley joined Ford in 2007 as global head of marketing and sales. He has played a variety of roles since, including leading the automaker’s Lincoln luxury brand and several international operations such as Europe and South America.