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Ovenden to take Ford's UK hot seat as Sharp retires

Mark Ovenden is returning to the UK to become MD of Ford of Britain as of August 15.

He will replace Nigel Sharp who is retiring at the age of 65 after 39 years with Ford.

Ovenden, who has been heading Ford Russia for almost three years, returns to the UK where he was previously Ford's marketing director.

He has had a wide range of global marketing and sales experience within Ford, including positions based at Dearborn and Cologne.

Sharp has been Ford's UK managing director since January 2009, prior to which he was sales director. Sharp helped Ford dealers to capitalise on the scrappage scheme, before combating the brand’s rising list prices with a strategic realignment which called on dealers to accept lower margins and sell what was on Ford cars rather than the discount they could take off them.

In his long career with Ford, Sharp had held senior finance, sales and marketing appointments across Europe.

Roelant de Waard, vice-president of marketing, sales and service, Ford of Europe, said Ovenden has a "wealth of experience" that "makes him ideally placed to manage Ford's biggest European market".

De Waard commended Sharp's business acumen, leadership skills and passion for the business as having made a significant difference to the Ford of Europe marketing and sales team.

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