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(LEAD) Hyundai Motor appoints ex-Nissan exec as global COO

Autos 09:50 April 19, 2019

(ATTN: ADDS details in last 5 paras)

SEOUL, April 19 (Yonhap) -- Hyundai Motor Co., South Korea's biggest carmaker by sales, said Friday it has appointed a former Nissan Motor executive as global chief operating officer to revive sales in the Americas.

Jose Munoz, who formerly served as chief performance officer at Nissan, will join Hyundai on May 1 to boost sales in the North American and Latin American markets, the company said in a statement.

The 54-year-old native of Spain is expected to improve lackluster sales, particularly in the United States, and enhance profitability based on his expertise and know-how in global automobile business operations, it said.

His decades of automotive and technology experience make him well suited for the post as Hyundai moves to evolve into a smart mobility solutions provider, the South Korean company said.

"My capabilities around delivering steady profitable growth, managing the entire supply chain, and working together with our dealer partners to find win-win solutions match up well with the opportunity here. I am eager to bring best global practices from the automobile and technology industries to my new role at Hyundai," Munoz said.

Munoz has also been named president and CEO of both Hyundai Motor North America and Hyundai Motor America. He will report to Hyundai's top leadership in Seoul and he will be based in Fountain Valley, California, the statement said.

In the past three years, Hyundai has suffered a decline in sales in the U.S., the most important automobile market, as it failed to introduce new models amid higher demand for sport utility vehicles.

Sales in the U.S. fell to 677,946 units in 2018, down from 685,555 in 2017 and 775,005 in 2016, the company's sales data showed.

Hyundai's COO Jose Munoz for the Americas (Yonhap)


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