Ford’s Tony Brown, group vice-president of global purchasing, has announced he is retiring after a 36-year career, 11 of which were spent as Ford’s purchasing boss. He will be replaced by Hau Thai-Tang (pictured), who is currently vice-president of engineering. 

Ford said Thai-Tang’s extensive experience leading the company’s global engineering operations in North America, South America and Europe will enable him to bring the same ‘One Ford’ approach to purchasing.

Ford purchases $90 billion of production and non-production goods and services each year around the world. 
Ford president and CEO Alan Mulally paid tribute to Brown, saying he was a world-class business leader who had helped to transform Ford’s relationships with its global supplier partners. 

“Tony’s leadership and dedication to working together have helped Ford and our supplier partners emerge from the recent global transformation of the auto industry well-positioned for future growth,” said Mulally.

In his new role Thai-Tang will report to Mark Fields, Ford’s chief operating officer. 

“Building on his extensive global product knowledge, Hau is the right leader to take our purchasing effectiveness and efficiency to the next level and unlock the full benefits of our scale and commonality,” said Fields.
Ford has also announced Birgit Behrendt will move to the role of vice-president, global programs and purchasing operations. She is currently executive director, global programs and the Americas purchasing. 

Burt Jordan, currently executive director, global vehicle and powertrain purchasing is adding supplier diversity to his responsibilities. Both will report to Thai-Tang.