Fiat Chrysler’s Sergio Marchionne named Ferrari CEO – USA TODAY

Brent Snavely, Detroit Free Press 4:46 p.m. EDT Could 2, 2016

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Sergio Marchionne assured Wall Street on Monday that Ferrari will certainly go on to pursue the same strategic growth strategy he outlined last year as chairman now that he additionally is taking over as CEO of the exotic Italian automaker.

Over the past two years, Marchionne has actually overseen the evolution of Ferrari from a niche brand that was portion of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles in to an independent firm under the belief that the company’s value and profits can easily expand exponentially now that it stands on its own.

Marchionne was named CEO of Ferrari on Monday as the automaker announced its the majority of profitable quarter ever and reported a 15% improve in sales.

“I was the one that pitched the Ferrari case on the road. It’s not going to be a various case compared to the one that I presented to the capital markets at the end of last year,” Marchionne said. “We are beginning, simply now, to define the real potential on the passenger vehicle adverse of just what this residence can easily actually deliver.”

Ferrari’s first-quarter net profit increased 19% to 78 million euros ($89.5 million). That compares along with 65 million euros in the very same period last year.

Marchionne said the improvement was due the two to a reduction in costs and an improve in sales. Ferrari sold 1,882 cars throughout the very first quarter, a 15% improve over the very same period last year.

“We have, as expected, delivered an incredibly tough quarter,” Marchionne said.

Marchionne’s appointment as CEO is efficient immediately. It is not expected to affect Marchionne’s others corporate responsibilities, which include his role as CEO of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, a global automaker, and chairman of CNH Industrial, a global manufacturer of agricultural equipment.

At Ferrari, he replaced Amedeo Felisa, that has been with Ferrari for 26 years. Felisa will certainly go on to serve on Ferrari’s board of directors along with just what the automaker described as a “mandate” to act as technical adviser to the company.

“I have actually known Amedeo for much more compared to a decade, and I have actually had the opportunity to job along with your man carefully for the last two years,” Marchionne said in a statement. “He is beyond any kind of doubt among the most effective automotive engineers in the world.”

Marchionne became chairman of Ferrari in the fall of 2015 when Ferrari replaced legendary Ferrari Chairman Luca di Montezemolo. That happened after Montezemolo and Marchionne clashed over the future direction of Ferrari.

Marchionne’s target is to expand Ferrari’s global sales, merchandising and theme park business while additionally protecting the exclusivity of the brand. At the time, Montezemolo worried the expansion of Ferrari could damage the brand.

On Monday, Marchionne said necessity for the company’s cars remains much above its sales.

“The order publications stay incredibly strong,” Marchionne said. “We are booked well in to 2017 now,” for the Ferrari 488 and the Ferrari Convertible.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles spun Ferrari off in to a stand-alone firm in January and launched an very first public offering for a section of the firm on the Brand-new York Stock Exchange last fall. The IPO appeared to be successful at first, yet the company’s stock has actually dropped regarding 27% from a 52-week higher of $60.97 last October. On Monday, Ferrari’s stock fell $1.32, or 2.9%, to close at $44.53 per share.

In March, Ferrari announced it had signed a non-binding agreement for the licensing of the design, construction and operation of a Brand-new theme park in a primary city in mainland China that will certainly be the automaker’s 3rd theme park.

Ferrari additionally is building a theme park called FerrariLand, which is expected to open near Barcelona in 2016, and opened FerrariWorld in Abu Dhabi in 2010.

Marchionne additionally strategies to expand sales of Ferrari’s merchandise. The firm strategies to much more fully outline its merchandising strategy next year.

One unsteady spot for Ferrari is Formula 1 racing. Ferrari has actually historically been dominant in Formula 1 racing, and its victory on the monitor is carefully linked to the value of the brand.

This year, Ferrari’s racing groups have actually been on the podium four times, yet they don’t have actually a first-position finish.

“We stay hugely disappointed by the performance of the Scuderia (racing team),” Marchionne said. “I believe we have to appropriate this quite quickly.”

Contact Brent Snavely: 313-222-6512 or bsnavely@freepress.com. Follow your man on Twitter @BrentSnavely. 

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