MG Rover picks former Kia chief for top UK role

MG Rover has appointed former Kia marketing director Guy Jones as its top UK marketer.

Jones, who resigned from the Korean car manufacturer in March for personal reasons (MW March 4), will oversee all marketing and PR for the MG and Rover brands in the UK. His job title is marketing and PR manager for the UK.

He denies rumours that MG Rover is again talking to advertising agencies after it severed a four-year relationship with M&C Saatchi last year. MG Rover works with local agency Cogent, which created advertising for the launch of the CityRover produced in India (MW November 13, 2003).

Jones says he will pursue a new marketing strategy focused around its XPower SV and the V8-engined ZT saloon models.

MG Rover global sales and marketing director John Sanders resigned in June last year after the board cut the marketing budget and redirected it below the line (MW June 26, 2003). He was replaced by Rod Ramsey, who returned to the company last autumn after working as a consultant.

MG Rover has been plagued by speculation about its future and the corporate conduct of the four Midlands businessmen who bought the company for &£10 from BMW in 2000. In August, sales for the Rover marque dipped by 37.3 per cent and by 35.7 per cent for MG compared with the same time last year, with combined sales totalling 1,686 cars, giving it a UK market share of three per cent.

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