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Executive reshuffle at Jaguar and Land Rover

Ford Motor Company has replaced Joe Greenwell as chief executive officer of Jaguar and Land Rover with Geoff Polites, who is praised in a company statement for his “leadership and business acumen” when running Ford Australia.

Polites has been heading marketing, sales and service at Ford of Europe. He will be replaced by Ford of Britain chairman elect Stephen Odell.

In two other senior moves, Bennie Fowler, Jaguar/Land Rover chief operating officer, returns to the US to take charge of Advanced Manufacturing Engineering, and Jan Gisen switches from operations manager at Ford’s plant in Genk, Belgium, to become Jaguar/Land Rover manufacturing director.

Greenwell returns to his more familiar territory of high-level governmental and public relations with his appointment as government affairs vice president for Ford PAG and Ford of Europe.

He reports to Mark Fields, executive vice president of Ford PAG and Europe, who says Greenwell laid the foundation for addressing business issues at Jaguar and its forthcoming XK sportscar.

“In the current political environment in Europe, it is important for us to have a stronger voice with government,” Fields says. “Joe is highly regarded internationally and his experience makes him ideal for this role.”

Greenwell told AM (January 28) it had been suggested he was back in the UK to oversee the running down of Jaguar: “Am I hell”, he retorted.

Of Polites, Fields says: “Few people know how to run a car business like Geoff.”

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