Ford picks md to succeed Ian McAllister

Ford of Britain has appointed Paul Thomas as managing director following Ian McAllister’s decision to retire at the end of February as chairman and managing director of the car company.

Thomas, who has worked at Ford for over 25 years, is currently sales director of Ford of Britain. He takes up his position on March 1, and will report to Roger Putman, Jaguar’s director of sales and marketing, who is moving to become chairman at Ford of Britain.

Thomas has held a number of sales and marketing roles at Ford of Britain, Ford Credit and Ford of Europe. These include marketing and product plans manager for Ford of Britain, and district manager between 1995 and 1999 with responsibility for all of Ford’s sales, marketing and dealerships. In May 1999 he was promoted to European c-brand manager for Ford Focus before being appointed sales director in April last year.

Putman’s and Thomas’s appointments follow Ford of Britain’s loss of the contract to build the new Fiesta, with most production having been moved to European plants. They will join Paul Van Der Burgh, who is taking over from John Mendel as marketing director for Ford of Britain this week. Mendel is to become head of sales and marketing for Mazda in North America (MW December 13, 2001).

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