In a surprise move, Ceva Logistics’ CEO John Pattullo is retiring from the company at the end of this week and will be replaced by Marvin O. Schlanger, Ceva’s current Chairman of the Board. Pattullo will continue to serve on Ceva’s Board of Directors.

“When John came to Ceva, he expressed his expectation of staying with the company for five years,” Schlanger said. “Under his leadership, the integration of TNT Logistics and EGL was successfully executed and the company's unique customer-focused, end-to-end operating model successfully developed. He has also assembled a world-class leadership team. All of this has allowed Ceva to serve our customers better and to grow faster than the market. We want to thank John for his strong leadership of the company and look forward to his continued guidance as a member of our Board."

Schlanger added: “I look forward to working with the talented and dedicated employees of Ceva as we execute our strategies to become the most admired company in the supply chain industry.”

Schlanger, who has a long history within the chemical industry, holds a number of directorships with companies owned by Apollo, the private equity firm that also owns Ceva.

Ceva has been emphasising its pre-eminent position in the automotive sector and the company is well placed to grow further under the leadership of Schlanger. It has automotive business balanced across all major regions and growth markets (apart from Russia) and a 50:50 split between inbound and aftermarket logistics, as well as a good mix between freight management and contract.
In an interview with Automotive Logistics earlier this year Pattullo noted that a few years ago high exposure to automotive could have been seen as a weakness but now looks to be 'a badge of honour' for logistics providers once again, something the company will use to its advantage.
"From Ceva's point of view, being the number one in automotive really helps us in other sectors and keeps us at the leading edge of professionalism in the eyes of other sectors," he said.
Meanwhile, at Porsche Dr Oliver Blume is replacing Wolfgang Leimgruber as head of Production and Logistics from the beginning of January next year. Leimgruber is retiring from the luxury carmaker after a career spanning 35 years but will continue to advise Volkswagen Group

Dr Wolfgang Porsche, chairman of the Supervisory Board, and Matthias Müller, president and CEO of Porsche, expressed their gratitude to Leimgruber for his long-standing commitment to the company and for his outstanding achievements.

A graduate mechanical engineer, Leimgruber worked in various responsible positions in the Production department for Porsche and oversaw a number of changes, including the expansion of the Leipzig plant into a full-blown body construction and paint facility for the production of the Macan sports SUV.

Leimgruber also introduced completely new production technologies and processes in the Zuffenhausen plant for production of the new 911, which is built with aluminium and lightweight steel.

"You raised the bar very high and have earned outstanding merit at Porsche," said Müller, adding that the company also showed great satisfaction in having gained, with the appointment of Blume, "a renowned production expert for Porsche AG."

Also a graduate mechanical engineer, Blume began his career at Audi 18 years ago and at Ingolstadt worked in the planning department of the paint shop and headed the body construction of the Audi A3. He was assistant to the board member for Production and subsequently assumed the cross-location management of the Audi pilot plant.

On an international level, he worked for Seat in Barcelona from 2004 to 2009, where he was responsible for both planning and the pilot series centre, prior to taking over the worldwide production-planning of the Volkswagen brand in Wolfsburg three and a half years ago. Blume will can now look forward to overseeing the production of the sports SUV Macan and the super sports car 918 Spyder that will go into production next year.

Russia Machines, which provides production, distribution and service facilities for vehicle maker GAZ Group in which it has a 61% share, has announced that Manfred Eibeck has been appointed CEO of the company, replacing Alexander Filatov who is moving to a new role as director general of the Russian Machines-Terex joint venture. Eibeck moves to the new position from his previous role as chief operating officer.
Eibeck will now focus on building strategic partnerships with leading international manufacturers along the key lines of Russian Machines’ businesses, which also include automotive parts, special purpose equipment, rail and military vehicles. Eibeck will also concentrate on introducing new technologies and modernising existing production processes.
“Manfred Eibeck has enormous experience in managing automotive businesses,” said Siegfried Wolf, chairman of the board of directors at Russian Machines. “As CEO he will drive forward recently announced large scale projects including the further development of international partnerships, launching new products and market expansion.”
Eibeck has been in the automotive industry since 1985 serving in key positions at Magna International including executive vice-president of Magna-Europe since 2007 and president of Magna Russia since 2010. Before that he worked at GM/Opel in manufacturing engineering and production in various managerial positions. He joined Russian Machines in July 2011.

Jeroen Seyger has been appointed interim chief financial officer (CFO) and interim member of the Executive Board at TNT Express. Seyger has taken over the CFO responsibilities from Bernard Bot, who was appointed interim CEO in September following the resignation of Marie-Christine Lombard, who has left the company to pursue “an external career opportunity”.

“Jeroen’s financial and business experience inside and outside the company, plus his involvement in recent strategic projects, gives me great confidence,” said Bot.

Seyger joined TNT in 2003, and has held a range of senior management positions in Finance, including group treasurer and, most recently, director of business control.

Stuart Jones has moved from Sovereign Business Integration to take up a new position as business development manager at time-critical logistics provider Priority Freight. The company said his appointment is designed to expand the company's customer base and strengthen its commitment to relationship building across the market.

Jones brings a wealth of sales and marketing experience in new business acquisitions, with a successful track record in achieving significant gains for his last company. He will now be responsible for new business and client retention in the automotive sector, along with an expansion into the aviation, energy, film and entertainment, marine supply and pharmaceutical sectors.

“Stuart is a highly effective business development manager, who has made?major contributions to the success of pioneering companies in the technology and automotive industries,” said Andrew Austin, CEO of Priority Freight. ”The addition of Stuart to the Priority Freight management team will reinforce our successful, innovative business model of recent years and compliments our growth strategy for the future. This will, in particular emphasise a lateral approach to customers’ expedited freight transport needs, being both inventive and holistic.”

“I am thrilled to join Priority Freight,” added Jones. “The team here has built a compelling expedited freight proposition and a dynamic business model.  I look forward to working with the Priority Freight professionals across Europe to accelerate our growth by providing unparalleled value for our clients and supplier partners.”

Elena Kostenina has moved from her position as general manager and director of sales at Autologistics to take up a new position as general manager of Groupe CAT’s Russian branch.

In her new role Kostentina will organise the development of the company’s transport services in Russia, a market the company stated has good prospects for its activity and in which it is expanding.

Kostenina joined Autologistics in 2010 following a tenure with the Avilon automotive dealership group in Russia. She graduated from the Russian Finance Academy’s faculty of International Economic Relations in 2008.

German-based finished vehicle carrier ARS-Altmann Automobilogistik has appointed Sandor Gasco to the newly created position of business development manager. Gasco was previously with GM Europe.

Already a strong contender in the European market on both rail and road, and reputedly the second largest vehicle logistics provider in Germany with a €250m turnover, the company said it was now time to “gear up the commercial activities of the company towards new fields” and widen its scope, including a focus on potential clients from overseas.

Following a training period Gasco will head the development of the company’s business in this direction.

Frits Mehrtens, whose consultancy helped recruit Gasco to the role, will remain involved with the company during the latter’s training, supporting the strategic goals outlined by the company.

Steve Buckerfield is the new managing director at Toll UK and will oversee more than 400 staff at 15 locations in the country.

Buckerfield began his career as an export clerk at Emery Worldwide before going on to work for American Airlines from 1990 until 2004, commencing as a cargo sales representative and rising to the role of managing director, sales Europe. He then worked for Walker Freight (later C.H. Robinson) and, most recently, for OHL where he was senior vice president of sales for its EMEA region. In his new role in the UK, Buckerfield will oversee more than 400 staff at 15 locations.

Buckerfield reports to Hakan Bicil, Toll's regional managing director of EMEA.