Following the recent exit of Bill Osborne, Ford Australia has today announced its new President and CEO - Marin Burela. Burela is currently the Vehicle Line Executive Director (Global Small Car Segment Vehicles Europe), however the new role will see him relocate to Ford Australia's Melbourne offices, and report directly to John Parker, Executive Vice President, Asia Pacific and Africa.
Burela first joined Ford Motor Company in 1984, and has served in a variety of senior management positions in Manufacturing, Sales and Marketing, and Product Development, in Asia, Europe and North America, including senior management and board positions at Jaguar and Land Rover
He has also held a number of senior roles at Ford Australia, where he was last based in 1998. In fact, Burela began his career with Ford as an engineering graduate of Ford Australia’s graduate program, almost 25 years ago.
“Burela's strong leadership and broad experience within Ford Motor Company will be vital to driving the successful future of Ford Australia's operations. As a Geelong [Australia] native, his return to Ford Australia allows him to lead not only one of Ford's more strategic global markets, but one for which he has such a strong affinity," said John Parker, Executive Vice President, Asia Pacific and Africa.
Burela’s most recent role was with Ford of Europe, which he joined in 2004 to lead the development of Ford's Global Small Car product portfolio. This included the new global Ford Fiesta, which is currently being rolled out in European markets, and shortly to markets in the Asia Pacific and Africa region.
It would be fair to surmise that this is one of the main reasons for Burela’s appointment to the top job at Ford Australia. No-doubt his experience with Ford Europe will put him in good stead to lead the Australian division, when they begin local production of the Focus in 2010/11.
Skeptics might even suggest that Burela’s appointment may be the start of a new era at Ford Australia – one that may not include the likes of Falcon and/or Territory.