Ford CFO to retire in 2012 image

Ford Motor Co.’s chief financial officer, Lewis Booth is expected to retire in the first-half of 2012, Bloomberg reports.

Ford Chief Executive Alan Mulally will probably retire around the end of 2013, and the retirement of Booth would give Mulally time to groom a successor, the report said.

A replacement for Mr. Booth hasn’t yet been identified but is likely to come from within Ford’s finance department, said this person. However, the reports said the leading candidate right now is Mark Fields, current leader of Ford’s North and South American operations.

“This sets up Mark Fields for a higher position he can step up to,” said Michelle Krebs, an analyst with auto researcher “This will move more pieces into place, but I still don’t think we’ll see the whole picture for a while.”

In a sign of confidence in Ford’s turnaround, Booth said the automaker would realize a one-time tax-related gain when it reports fourth-quarter results because the automaker has grown more confident in its sustained profitability.

Booth was born in Liverpool where his father was a Ford dealer.

During the 1980s and early 1990s, Booth held a series of management positions in Ford of Europe in Britain and in Germany in Finance Staff, Truck Operations, Product Development, Manufacturing, and Sales.
From Aug 1997 to Jan 2000 he was Managing Director of the South Africa Motor Corporation (SAMCOR).

He is known for his passion for cars and a preference for picking them in colors that make him a standout in Ford’s buttoned-down executive ranks.