Renault names veteran exec to head new sales and regions unit

October 26, 2018 14:54 CET

PARIS — Renault Group has appointed Olivier Murguet to the newly created post of executive vice president, sales and regions. Murguet, formerly chairman of the Americas region, will assume broad responsibility for Renault’s global sales performance and report to Chief Operating Officer Thierry Bollore.

Murguet, 52, will lead a new division that consists of the five regions in which Renault operates — Africa-Middle East-India, the Americas, Asia, Asia-Pacific, Eurasia and Europe. Regional directors will report to Murguet, who will also oversee global sales of electric vehicles, corporate fleets, used cars, new mobility services, after sales and sales forecasting, among other responsibilities.

He will be replaced as head of the Americas region by Luiz Pedrucci, CEO of Renault Brazil.

Murguet started his career at Renault in 1990 in Portugal. He worked in sales and marketing in France and was appointed sales director for Brazil in 1996. In 2001 he became sales director for France, and later held management positions in Poland, Spain and Mexico. He was appointed CEO for Brazil in 2012 and director of the Americas region in 2015.

His appointment comes at a time of volatility in Renault’s regional sales. The company’s performance has generally been on an upward trend in Europe, which accounts for about 50 percent of sales and where sales rose 8.9 percent in the third quarter this year, compared with 2017. However, third-quarter sales fell 24 percent in Africa-Middle East-Asia after Renault pulled out of Iran following the reimposition of U.S. nuclear sanctions; 15 percent in China, excluding sales from a new joint venture with Jinbei Brilliance; and 5.6 percent in Eurasia, where an increase in Russia could not offset a 51 percent drop in Turkey.

“Renault is setting up the new Sales and Regions division to increase the efficiency of our commercial operations and make them more profitable,” Bollore said in a statement announcing Murguet’s appointment.

CEO Carlos Ghosn has emphasized global sales growth in Renault’s 2017-2022 strategic plan, Drive the Future. He has targeted an overall volume increase of 40 percent, to 5 million vehicles annually. Sixty percent of those sales will come internationally, including a goal of 550,000 annual sales in China. Renault sold 35,000 vehicles there in 2017, but has entered into a joint venture with Jinbei Brilliance to sell commercial vehicles, and will roll out a small electric car, the K-ZE, in 2020.

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