Premium-car maker Volvo, which Ford is selling to China's Zhejiang Geely, has hired the head of Volkswagen's North America business as its chief executive, a German newspaper reported.
Stefan Jacoby, chief executive of Volkswagen Group of America, is to replace Briton Stephen Odell at the helm of Volvo in August, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reported, citing unspecified sources.
Odell is to become head of Ford's European operations, the paper said.
Volkswagen said it had replaced Jacoby as head of its U.S. operations on an interim basis until (his) contractual situation has been clarified.
We are holding contract talks with Stefan Jacoby, VW said in a statement. These talks have by no means concluded yet.
The automaker, which is aiming to double its share of the U.S. market to 4 percent by 2012, said Michael Lohscheller would take Jacoby's responsibilities for VW Group of America on an interim basis.
Lohscheller, a VW executive vice president, has had responsibility for managing the financial side of VW's U.S. operations since 2007.
Jacoby took charge of VW's U.S. operations in 2007 and led a drive to build up the automaker's brand under the Das Auto tagline and to improve profitability for its roughly 600 dealers. VW is also in the process of completing a new factory in Chattanooga, Tennessee that will build a new mid-size sedan.
Jacoby could not be immediately reached for comment.
(Reporting by Ludwig Burger and Jan Schwartz in Frankfurt and by Kevin Krolicki in Detroit; Editing by David Holmes, Bernard Orr)