Roadrunner Transportation Systems appoints new chairman of the board

Roadrunner Transportation Systems appoints new chairman of the board

Roadrunner Transportation Systems has announced that James D. Staley (pictured), who has served as a director of the company since October 2010 and as Lead Independent Director since December 2016, has been appointed as the new Chairman of the Board.

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Staley succeeds Scott D. Rued, who served as Chairman from March 2010 to November 2017, and Mark A. DiBlasi, who served as Vice Chairman from April 2017 to November 2017.

From 2004 through December 2007, Staley served in various capacities for YRC Worldwide, Inc. and its subsidiaries, one of the world's largest transportation services providers, including as President and Chief Executive Officer of Roadway Group and YRC Regional Transportation. Prior to that, Mr. Staley served for over 30 years in various capacities for Roadway Express, including President and Chief Operating Officer. Staley also currently serves as the Lead Director of Douglas Dynamics, Inc., a designer, manufacturer, and seller of snow and ice control equipment for light trucks.

Curtis W. Stoelting, Roadrunner's Chief Executive Officer, commented, "I am delighted that Jim has agreed to serve as our next Chairman. His history with the company and understanding of our industry are a tremendous asset to the board and our management team."

Panalpina COO Andy Weber steps down and won't be replaced

Panalpina COO Andy Weber steps down and won't be replaced

Panalpina's Chief Operating Officer, Andy Weber, has decided to leave Panalpina for personal reasons but will support the company as a consultant.

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Andy Weber, Chief Operating Officer (COO) and a member of the Executive Board, joined Panalpina in 2015. He has successfully led many turnaround projects and made the business segment Energy and Project Solutions fit for competition in the challenging energy and capital projects sector.

"With a track record of over 30 years in the freight forwarding industry, Andy Weber is a very experienced manager. While I regret his departure, I am pleased that he has agreed to continue to support Panalpina in a consulting role and that the company can further rely on his expertise for specific projects," said Stefan Karlen, CEO of Panalpina.

Weber will leave the company at the end of the year. The COO position will not be replaced, streamlining Panalpina's reporting structure; only the Energy and Project Solutions division have been reporting to Weber, while the global heads of Air Freight, Ocean Freight and Logistics and Manufacturing, as well as the regional CEOs, already report to Karlen, who will take over Weber's duties.

Volkswagen Group speaks of continued commitment to diversity of workforce

Volkswagen Group speaks of continued commitment to diversity of workforce

Diversity managers from all Volkswagen group brands and companies have met at the Bentley plant in Crewe, UK for the first Group Diversity Conference.

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The conference focused on the exchange of best practice examples and diversity in the regions.

Dr. Karlheinz Blessing, Member of the Board of Management of the Volkswagen Group responsible for Human Resources, Organisation and IT, says: "Volkswagen stands for diversity, fairness, tolerance and equality of opportunity because we are convinced that diversity is essential for innovative power, creativity and performance. Diversity also safeguards the competitiveness of Volkswagen. In practical terms, diversity at Volkswagen means teams consisting of men and women, young and old people, employees of various professions with qualifications in a variety of disciplines – in brief: dedicated female and male employees from throughout the world.

At the conference, Elke Heitmüller, Head of Diversity of the Volkswagen Group, presented the future orientation of diversity management within the Group. Other topics included best practice examples from brands and locations as well as the development of a diversity knowledge and competence network.

The Volkswagen Group has included the strengthening of diversity in its Group 'TOGETHER 2025' strategy. The strategy serves as a guideline for all brands and companies. As a group active throughout the world, Volkswagen benefits from its international positioning. For example, companies from the US or South Africa can contribute their decades of experience in creating awareness of unconscious bias. In Europe, companies have comprehensive experience with gender-based quotas.

Big shake-up in Toyota top management driven by electrification and more

Big shake-up in Toyota top management driven by electrification and more

Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) has announced major changes to its executive lineup and revision of its organisational structure in January 2018 to 'further strengthen cooperation among companies of the Toyota Group and boost business innovation'.

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TMC has said that it has also been promoting appointment of the right people to the right positions in its executive lineup. Transcending practices of the past, efforts have included appointing its first non-Japanese executive vice president in 2015 and its first executive vice president with a technical-position background in 2017.

With the advance of electrification, automation, connectivity and other technologies, TMC believes the automotive industry has now entered a phase of 'competition and coordination' that involves entities from other industries. Surrounded by changes of unprecedented speed and scale, TMC is aware it faces a 'now or never' situation in which not a moment can be spared.

"The automotive industry has entered an era of profound transformation, the likes of which come only once every 100 years," said TMC President Akio Toyoda. "Over the next 100 years, there is no guarantee that automobile manufacturers will continue to play leading roles in mobility. A crucial battle has begun―not one about winning or losing, but one about surviving or dying."

Harnessing supplier expertise

The changes are too numerous to detail here but many of them firm up ties with Toyota Group companies, an example of the carmaker bringing experienced managers from its supply base in to the core of the company:

  • Toyota Tsusho's Executive Officer Toshimitsu Imai is to serve as a managing officer and CEO in charge of Toyota's Africa regional operations
  • Denso's vice chairman, Koji Kobayashi, is to become Toyota's new chief financial officer
  • Brake-maker Advics's president, Satoshi Ogiso, is returning to Toyota to be president of its commercial vehicle company. Ogiso previously worked at Toyota, where he was known for his work on it's trademark hybrid technology.

Non-Japanese promoted and increased gender diversity

Toyota has shown itself more enlightened than other Japanese OEMs in promoting non-Japanese executives and this trend is continuing, along with more females rising to senior positions:

  • Englishman Simon Humphries moves from Toyota Europe Design Development to the parent company as executive general manager for design at the Advanced R&D and Engineering Co.
  • American Michael Sweers, chief engineer of the Tacoma and Tundra pickups and the Sequoia and 4Runner SUVs, was also appointed executive general manager, at the commercial vehicle sub-company. He is stationed in Japan with a staff in that country and in North America
  • Female engineer Chika Kako is promoted to the role of executive vice president at Lexus International Co. She was Toyota's first female chief engineer and served in that role on the Lexus CT hybrid hatchback.
Mercedes-Benz Trucks appoints new connected services czar

Mercedes-Benz Trucks appoints new connected services czar

On January 1, 2018 Volker Hansen (pictured) will become the new General Manager of Fleetboard GmbH, the world's most successful provider of connected services for commercial vehicles.

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In this position he also becomes Head of Digital Solutions & Services at Mercedes-Benz Trucks. Responsibility for both areas was previously held by Dr Daniela Gerd tom Markotten, who moved on to become General Manager of moovel GmbH on 1 November 2017.

Since 2014, as part of the corporate CASE activities, Volker Hansen has been responsible for the development of electric powertrains at Mercedes-Benz Cars. CASE stands for Connected, Autonomous, Shared & Service and Electric Drive – the future strategic fields for Daimler AG.

Volker Hansen began his career at Daimler AG in Berlin in 1995. After various positions in Germany and abroad, he became responsible for the innovation strategy and project portfolio for research and predevelopment at Mercedes-Benz Cars from 2004. Between 2006 and 2011 he was Head of Innovation Strategy and Key Account Research and Development at Mercedes-Benz Cars. From 2011 to 2014 he was responsible for strategic project management for the localisation of the Vito in the NAFTA and Latin America regions.

Since as long ago as 2003, Fleetboard has combined experience from the logistics and commercial vehicle sectors with connectivity and digitisation. Its core field of business has always been digital telematics for commercial vehicles. Since the initial market launch in 2000, some 220 000 vehicles operated by more than 7000 customers worldwide have been fitted with Fleetboard facilities.

The aim of Fleetboard is not only to constantly improve existing products for the logistics sector, but also to develop completely new solutions quickly and effectively. Today Fleetboard records a wealth of vehicle status, tour and position data, and sends it by mobile phone to the relevant company.

Fleetboard offers a comprehensive range of modularly designed services relating to fleet, order and driver management, which customers can combine according to their specific needs. The aim is to support the logistics processes as far as possible with digital solutions and to increase the profitability of all the protagonists within the logistic industry.

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