(PRESS RELEASE) MARTORELL, 1-Jul-2022 — /EuropaWire/ — SEAT S.A., a Spanish car manufacturer part of Volkswagen Group, has announced the succession of Thomas Schmall by Thomas Schäfer as the Chairman of the company’s Board of Directors. Schäfer, CEO of Volkswagen brand, will take over the position from July 8, 2022. The leadership change is part of recent reorganization in the Group with effect from July 1, including Schäfer’s designation as new member of the Group Board of Management responsible for the ‘Volume’ Brand Group, which includes Volkswagen, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, SEAT/CUPRA and ŠKODA. The aim of those changes is to intensify and accelerate the cooperation within the Brand Group, leveraging the full synergy potential and sustainably reducing costs and complexity.
Schäfer will succeed Thomas Schmall at the helm of the company’s Board of Directors. Together with the President of the Executive Committee, Wayne Griffiths, Schäfer will drive the growth of CUPRA and the transformation of the company with the aim of positioning Spain into an EV Hub in Europe. In recent months, during Schmall’s tenure, the foundation has been laid with milestones such as the ground-breaking Future: Fast Forward project, the mobilization of a 10-billion-euro investment programme together with partners and the localization of a planned Volkswagen Group Gigafactory in Valencia.
“The coming years will be both exciting and challenging for SEAT/CUPRA,” said Thomas Schäfer. “The company drives forward key strategic projects for the entire Volkswagen Group: the growth of business, as well as the electrification of Spain, with the design, development and production of the urban electric vehicle models for our Volume brands. With its expertise and passion, our Spanish team will play an important role for overall success. I look forward to support SEAT/CUPRA on its path into the future as a strong, committed partner within the Volume Brand Group,” the new Chairman of the SEAT S.A. Board of Directors added.
Thomas Schäfer has extensive experience in the international automotive industry. The qualified mechanical engineer began his career at Daimler AG in Stuttgart in 1994, where he held various senior management positions. Schäfer joined the Volkswagen Group in 2012, initially heading the Group’s International Production unit, where he held responsibility for CKD projects and negotiations on new production sites. Schäfer became Chairman and Managing Director of Volkswagen Group South Africa in 2015 and was responsible for Volkswagen’s business in this country and the development of the Group brands in the sub-Saharan Africa region. Schäfer was appointed Chairman of the Board of Management of ŠKODA AUTO a. s. in August 2020.
Schäfer joins the Board of Directors sitting alongside Dr. Ingrun-Ulla Bartölke, Dr. Oliver Blume, Daniela Cavallo, Luis Comas Martínez de Tejada, Dr. Stefan Piëch, Dr. Josep Piqué and Mark Porsche.
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SOURCE: SEAT, S.A.