PSA Group UK’s managing director Alison Jones has been named as winner of 2020’s Autocar Great Women in the British Car Industry awards event.
Jones, who spoke to AM for the September digital edition’s OEM focus on the French carmaker, was recognised among 100 female stars from across the automotive sector, spanning 12 categories, including Design, Sales and Marketing.
She also came top of Autocar’s Executive category, alongside 11 other category winners from the Top 100, which recognises the 100 most influential women in the British car industry today.
Angela Shepherd, the chief executive of Mercedes-Benz Retail Group, was among the Executive category’s finalists, having claimed the award for the Sales-Retail category as Inchcape’s chief human resources officer, Alison Clarke, made the grade after her win in the People Development category.
The event, which is held in partnership with the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) announced its Top 100 and category award winners this morning (September 16) ahead of a virtual Great Women in the British Car Industry event which will be live streamed from 2pm.
Commenting on Jones’ overall win in this year’s awards, Autocar editor Mark Tisshaw said: “Alison has a formidable track record in the industry over many years.
“She played a key role in helping steer Volkswagen through the emissions scandal and towards electrification.
“Now, she has already shown what she is capable of at the top of the PSA Group in the UK, leading its three brands into a new age of electrification and tougher regulations while also handling the Covid-19 crisis with aplomb.”
Great Women winner Jones has been in the industry for more than 20 years, spending the majority of her career at the Volkswagen Group.
Starting in customer services in 2000, she became finance director in 2004 and eventually rose to the position of managing director of Volkswagen Passenger Cars.
Last year, Jones was appointed UK managing director and senior vice-president of the PSA Group, overseeing Peugeot, Citroën and DS in the UK.
The PSA Group UK was named as the AM Awards 2020's Manufacturer of the Year at the showcase industry event, in Birmingham, back in February.
Commenting on her Autocar award win, Jones said: “It’s an honour to join the impressive list of winners at the Great Women in the British Car Industry awards.
“The initiative is a fantastic way to showcase the breadth of talent across the industry.
“I strongly believe, as do my colleagues at Groupe PSA, that a diverse and inclusive workplace, in all aspects, is a successful workplace.
“We work together to constantly drive improvements in this area, which is great for our colleagues, and our business results.”
Chair of the judging panel and managing director of Autocar and Haymarket Automotive, Rachael Prasher, said: “The phenomenal success of all our Top 100 Great Women demonstrates the scope of career opportunities in the automotive world and the achievements possible.
“Each year, the talent pool gets bigger, making our job as judges harder, but it’s a fantastic sign of the breadth of talented women working in the industry.”
SMMT chief executive, Mike Hawes, said: “There’s much more we need to do to improve all aspects of the sector’s diversity, but it is role models such as those recognised here who can help ensure our sector is an exciting and inspiring place in which to work, attracting the best and brightest for the future.”
Today’s virtual Great Women in the British Car Industry event features a panel debate chaired by Prasher.
PSA’s Linda Jackson, Bentley board member Astrid Fontaine and former England Women’s cricket captain Clare Connor, will be among the guests.
Former Citroen global CEO and current executive vice-president of the PSA Group, Jackson, has also been inducted into the Great Women Hall of Fame as its inaugural member, as recognition for having won the initiative twice before and for her illustrious achievements in the industry.
You can view the Top 100 by visiting www.autocar.co.uk/greatwomen/2020.