Daimler is extending leadership contracts for Dieter Zetsche and Thomas Weber, as well as assigning new responsibilities for Andreas Renschler and Wolfgang Bernhard.

The carmaker said Zetsche’s contract as chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler and head of Mercedes-Benz Cars would run until December 31, 2016. It is also extending the contract for Thomas Weber, Board of Management member for Group Research and Mercedes-Benz Cars Development, for the same period.

Zetsche has been a member of the Board of Management of Daimler since December 1998 and its chairman since January 2006. Weber has been a member of Daimler’s Board of Management since January 2004.

As of 1 April this year Andreas Renschler will assume Board of Management responsibility for production and purchasing of Mercedes-Benz Passenger Cars & Mercedes-Benz Vans. At the same time, Wolfgang Bernhard will assume Board of Management responsibility for Daimler Trucks, Renschler’s current responsibility.

Renschler has been a member of the Board of Management of Daimler and head of Daimler Trucks since October 2004 while Bernhard has been a member of the Board of Management of Daimler and head of Operations Mercedes-Benz Cars since February 18, 2010.

Asked whether Renschler’s appointment was part of a broader realignment of the purchasing and production organisation at Mercedes and whether it had implications for logistics reporting up through the chain of responsibility the carmaker said it had no further comment at this stage.

“The long-term orientation of the group’s leadership is an essential factor for Daimler’s sustained success,” Manfred Bischoff, member of the Supervisory Board at Daimler. “With today’s extensions of the contracts of Dieter Zetsche and Thomas Weber, we are maintaining the important continuity at the top executive level.”

Honda has announced a major executive shakeup at its North American regional operations that will become effective at the beginning of April this year. The company said it was strengthening the leadership of its North American regional operations and would “merge under one roof” some of the support functions common to its various companies in North America. While logistics is not directly involved, the company did said that the move was aimed at speeding up the time it took to get new products to market.

Tetsuo Iwamura, president of Honda North America, will add new responsibilities as the COO of Automobile Operations and risk management officer for Honda Motor. He is also COO of North American Regional Operations and president and CEO of American Honda Motor.

"These organisational changes will improve the speed of decision-making and the efficiency of our business operations," said Iwamura. "Our global customers desire new, exciting and affordable automobile, motorcycle and power equipment products, and these changes will enhance our ability to quickly bring our customers' dreams to the market."

Amongst the others, Hidenobu Iwata to president of Honda North America Services, a new shared services company that will be operative by April. Iwata will also remain in his current positions as president of Honda of America Mfg and senior managing officer of Honda Motor.

Bob Nelson will become president of Honda Manufacturing of Indiana, based in Greensburg, moving from his role as a senior vice president at HMIN, and Jon Minto will become president of Honda Engineering North America, Honda's production engineering company. Minto is currently a senior vice president with EGA, which is based in Marysville, Ohio.

In Canada, Dan Smith will become president of Honda of Canada Mfg and Jerry Chenkin will become president and CEO of Honda Canada.

Union Pacific has named Marty Coalson president of ShipCarsNow, its wholly-owned vehicle transport service. He will take up the role on 4 March and succeeds Roland Fortner, who helped form the subsidiary and is moving to a new role in Union Pacific’s Marketing and Sales group.

Coalson has been with Union Pacific for 34 years, most recently serving as assistant vice president of Damage Prevention Services, where he worked closely with the railroad’s automotive customers and industry leaders on transport quality.

He has wide-ranging domestic and international transport experience and he has worked with Union Pacific’s Intermodal and Chemical business teams.

Coalson was previously responsible for sales forecasting and computer modelling of the railroad’s network to assist with resource planning.
“Roland did an excellent job in developing ShipCarsNow and we are extremely confident Marty will build upon the attention to customer satisfaction, quality and service that has been the mission at ShipCarsNow,” said Eric Butler, Union Pacific executive vice president - Marketing and Sales.

Monica Franco is the new the Industry Vertical head of Automotive and Manufacturing for the Region Americas at Panalpina. Franco will be based in Miami and replaces Tom Jendrowski who has left to work for Pilot Freight Services as regional manager, covering Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina and Northern Tennessee.

Franco was previously director of Business Development at DHL Exel Supply Chain as well as regional customer manager for the Americas at DHL Global Customer Solutions.

Markus Machers is now the US area head of the Industry Verticals Automotive and Manufacturing at Panalpina. He moves over from his previous position as vice president/head of Vertical Manufacturing.

TNT Express has appointed Tex Gunning as CEO. Subject to shareholder approval he will take up the role at the beginning of June 2013. Gunning is currently on TNT Express’ Supervisory Board but will relinquish the role as part of the appointment process. He is also a member of AkzoNobel’s Board of Management and Executive Committee but will step down in April.

“Tex’s extensive business experience and track record in successfully turning around businesses and delivering results make him the ideal candidate in this critical time for the company,” said Antony Burgmans, Chairman of the Supervisory Board.

Gunning is reported to have played a crucial role in the integration of ICI’s paints activities and oversaw the turnaround of Decorative Paints in North America, as well as substantially restructuring European activities and growing the business significantly in other markets

Bernard Bot, who has been acting CEO at TNT Express since the departure of Marie-Christine Lombard in October last year (read more here), will return to his executive board position as CFO. Jeroen Seyger, currently interim CFO, will continue in a senior finance function in the company.

“I am honoured to be part of TNT Express and look forward to leading the company alongside Bernard, with support from the extended management team,” Tex Gunning said. “I fully endorse the improvement plan that is being developed and am fully committed to its successful implementation.”??

The finalisation of the company’s improvement plans that will be presented at the upcoming strategy update on 25 March 2013.

Kim Pedersen, currently global head of sales and marketing at SNCF’s logistics division Geodis Wilson, has been appointed executive vice president of the company. He will take up the role on 1 March and will be heading the global freight forwarding division.

“In Kim Pedersen we have a person at the top of our freight forwarding activities who brings the capabilities, the experience and most importantly the right mindset to lead this important business unit of Geodis further into areas of strong and sustainable growth on a global scale”, said Marie Christine Lombard, CEO of Geodis.

Pedersen joined Geodis Wilson in 1994 (when it was the former Wilson Logistics). He became managing director in Denmark and later on regional vice president of the entire Scandinavian organisation. In 2009, he was appointed deputy CMO and subsequently joined the Board of Management in his current position.

Jason Reiner moves to a new role at North American rail provider Norfolk Southern as assistant vice president of Industrial Development on 1 March. He replaces Newell Baker, who is retiring.
Reiner, who was most recently director of Industrial Development, began as a co-op student in the Industrial Development engineering department at the company (then Southern Railway) while attending Virginia Tech in 1978. Upon graduation with a civil engineering degree, he joined the company’s engineering department in 1982.

He will be based in Atlanta and report to Robert Martínez, vice president Business Development.
Baker, a civil engineering graduate of North Carolina State University, joined Norfolk Southern’s engineering department in 1973 and served in several positions of increasing responsibility, becoming assistant vice president Industrial Development in 2008.
“Newell has done an extraordinary job during his tenure as AVP, perhaps most prominently in achieving record back-to-back project growth for each of the five years during which he has held that job,” said Martínez. “I’ve no doubt, based on his experience and expertise, that Jason Reiner will attain a comparable level of accomplishment and keep NS industrial development as the benchmark in the rail industry.”
Norfolk Southern works with state and local economic development authorities on projects involving site location and development of infrastructure to connect customers to its rail system and provides free and confidential plant location services, including industrial park planning, site layout, track design, and logistics assistance.

Jim McAdam is to leave his role as president of APL Logistics later this year once a successor has been found for the position.
“Now is the appropriate time for me to step down and pursue new career objectives,” said McAdam. “Our business, and our organisation, is well positioned to continue our rapid growth and achieve the long-term goals that we have set for APL Logistics.”

APL is subsidiary of global cargo container transport and logistics provider Neptune Orient Lines.
NOL Group CEO Ng Yat Chung said that McAdam had been instrumental in building up the business to where was today.

“We thank him for his long and dedicated service to the company and wish him well as he pursues the next phase in his career,” said Chung. “We will build upon Jim and his team’s success as we continue to grow our supply chain business.”