Fiat Chrysler Automobiles could be labeled as the creation of its chief executive officer Sergio Marchionne – which forged a merger between Italy’s Fiat SpA and America’s Chrysler Group LLC.
Now the feisty and outspoken executive is looking for the next big thing while also directing the company’s plan to rebound, escape its massive debt and deliver a massive sales improvement and profit jump. His desire is to see the world’s seventh largest automaker and third biggest in the US merged to a powerful partner – such as General Motors – to escape the wild conundrum of the modern automotive industry that incurs spectacular costs with diminishing returns. But, at 63 years of age, he is the first to admit he’s not going to be the CEO of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles all his life. Though he could actually stay on as the leader for a little longer than initially expected.
Back in May last year, Marchionne promised to the world his duty as CEO of FCA would be finished in 2018, when the five year recovery strategy should be complete – but now in a recent interview with Automotive News he claims he could stay until 2020. “I can do this for another five years if you push me, right? Beyond that, I ain’t gonna do it, and I don’t want to,” Marchionne said in the interview. And for the upcoming moment the company would need new leadership he says he dedicates part of his busy schedule each year to scout for proper talent. He could also be followed by one of his main aids – Dodge brand leader Tim Kuniskis, 48; Jeep brand head Mike Manley, 51; U.S. and Canada sales boss Reid Bigland, 48; and CFO Richard Palmer, 48.