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Retirement leads to Ford appointments

FORD of Britain has a new senior management team. Commercial vehicle director Gary Whittam is retiring after more than 27 years with the company and will be replaced by Steve Kimber. Whittam will work alongside Kimber until he retires on June 1 in order to help with the marketing of the new Transit van.

Whittam started his career as an apprentice truck mechanic in 1972 and joined Ford as a technician in 1978. Within Ford he has worked in most commercial vehicle functions across Europe and the UK.

Kimber was manager of Ford’s field operations and has more than 15 years of experience in sales and marketing at Ford. He was most recently manager of the European CV marketing team and was also product and commercial vehicle business strategy manager.

Mark Ovenden has been appointed director of marketing, replacing Steve Hood, who joins the Ford Retail dealer group as director marketing and strategy.

Ovenden joins from Ford of Europe, where he was European small car brand manager. He has a wide range of global marketing and sales experience within Ford. Most recently, he was responsible for the 2006 Fiesta and Fusion facelift programmes.

  • FRANCESCA Smith has been made associate director of Lex Vehicle Leasing’s Momentum Consultancy Service. Her role involves providing senior fleet decision-makers with consultancy on a range of tax issues that crop up while running a fleet.

    A qualified chartered accountant, Smith has been with Lex for the past 11 years.

  • KIA Motors UK has promoted Hamish McCowan to aftersales director after growth in the parts market. McCowan left Mazda in 2000 to join Kia as regional business manager before moving to head of aftersales in 2003. As aftersales director, he will add to his previous responsibilities by developing Kia’s internal and dealer network training programme.

  • FLEET management firm Jaama has made Elaine Horton corporate marketing executive of its risk management division. Horton previously spent 10 years at rival cfc solutions as marketing team leader until being made redundant. Her appointment follows a rise in demand for Jaama’s services, the firm said.

  • INDEPENDENT fleet firm FMG Support has a new managing director in the shape of Tracy Pepper.

    Pepper has worked at FMG as a consultant since May 2005 and a non-executive director since September.

    Her appointment will enable Nick Brown, FMG’s chief executive, to focus on medium and long-term growth.

    Pepper has previously worked for utilities company South Staffordshire Group, Yorkshire Water and the NHS Trust.

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