The new global joint venture between Mercedes-Benz and China’s Geely for the smart brand now has a global executive team. The ‘smart Automobile Co. Ltd.’, registered in Ningbo, China, will be led by Xiangbei Tong as the Chief Executive Officer. Tong was managing Lynk & Co — Geely’s new premium brand.
Daniel Lescow has been appointed as Vice President of Sales, Marketing and After Sales. He brings several years of experience in growing the smart brand and has spent 6 years working in the Chinese market. With over 25 years of experience in the automotive industry, Jun Yang will take charge of technical development as the Vice President of Research & Development. Ulf Nestler will serve as the Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer. For the past 8 years, he has contributed to the strong growth of Mercedes-Benz in China, the official statement said.
As a wholly-owned subsidiary, smart Europe will be based in Leinfelden-Echterdingen, Stuttgart. Tong has appointed Dirk Adelmann as the CEO of smart Europe. Adelmann held several Executive Sales & Marketing roles in the global Mercedes-Benz network. Martin Günther — an experienced Finance and Controlling Executive within the Mercedes-Benz Aftersales organization, has been appointed as the CFO of smart Europe.
The total registered capital of the joint venture will be 5.4 billion RMB (over US$ 771 million or INR 5,777 crores) with an equal 2.7 billion RMB contribution from both parties.
The board of directors of the new smart joint venture will be made up of 6 executives with equal representation from both parties. Daimler board representatives will include Hubertus Troska — responsible for Greater China; Britta Seeger — responsible for Marketing & Sales, and Markus Schäfer — responsible for Group Research and Mercedes-Benz Cars Development. Geely board representatives will include Geely Holding Chairman Li Shufu, Geely Holding President, Geely Auto Group President and CEO An Conghui, Geely Holding Executive Vice President and CFO Daniel Donghui Li.