UK: Jaguar Land Rover names new CEO as deal completes
Tata Motors has completed its US$2.3bn purchase of Jaguar Land Rover [JLR] from Ford in an all-cash transaction, contributing about $600m to the JLR pension plans, and named a new CEO for the unit.
Current acting CEO David Smith has been confirmed in the role and replaces Australian Geoff Polites who died recently. Smith has 25 years of experience with JLR (most recently as CFO) and Ford. Before his recent return, he was director of finance and business strategy for PAG and Ford of Europe.
Smith said: "We are very pleased with the association with Tata Motors. We look forward to a sustained bright future for the company and its stakeholders."
At a handover ceremony on Monday (2 June) at JLR's Gaydon headquarters in the UK, Tata Sons and Tata Motors chairman Ratan Tata said: "We are looking forward to extending our full support to the [JLR] team to realise their competitive potential.
"Jaguar Land Rover will retain their distinctive identities and continue to pursue their respective business plans as before."
Tata Motors said JLR had been acquired on a cash free, debt-free basis and the deal included the ownership by JLR or perpetual royalty-free licences of all necessary intellectual property rights, manufacturing plants, two UK design centres and the worldwide network of national sales companies.
It said long term agreements had been reached for the supply of engines, stampings and other components to Jaguar Land Rover while other areas of 'transition support' from Ford included IT, accounting and access to test facilities.
"The two companies will continue to cooperate in areas such as design and development through sharing of platforms and joint development of hybrid technologies and powertrain engineering," Tata said.
Ford Motor Credit Company will also continue to provide financing for dealers and customers for a transition period.
"Tata Motors is in an advanced stage of negotiations with leading auto finance providers to support the JLR business in the UK, Europe and the US, and is expected to select financial services partners shortly," the automaker added.