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Manley’s Role after FCA-PSA Merger Remains Unclear

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO awaits an assignment in new company
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It still isn’t clear what role Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Mike Manley will play when FCA and PSA Group complete their $47 billion merger early next year.

FCA CEO Mike Manley  (Image: FCA)

One thing we do know for sure: He won’t sit on the 11-member board of Stellantis, as the combined companies will be called.

Odd Man Out?

That much was apparent last December when the two companies first spelled out details about their proposed merger. FCA and PSA went to elaborate lengths to structure the merged company to fairly represent both partners.

But Manley’s name was conspicuously absent from the proposed org chart. It’s still missing in the roster of Stellantis board members announced earlier today.

Manley became CEO at FCA after Sergio Marchionne’s died suddenly in July 2018. PSA and FCA say only that his role at Stellantis will be revealed before the merger is finalized.

Accent on Outsiders

Stellantis will be governed by seven independent directors and only one representatives from each of the partner carmakers: John Elkann, currently FCA’s chairman, who will become chairman of Stellantis; and Carlos Tavares, PSA’s CEO, who will take over as CEO of the merged company.

PSA CEO Carlos Tavares  (Image: PSA)

Two other board members with special assignments are:

  • Robert Peugeot, currently a member of PSA’s supervisory board and chairman of French holding company FFP (which holds a stake in PSA), will become vice-chairman of Stellantis.
  • Henri de Castries, former CEO of insurance services provider AXA, will be the senior independent director.

The remaining seven nominees all are non-executive directors:

  • Fiona Cicconi, who heads of human resources at pharmaceutical company AstraZenica, will be one of the Stellantis board’s two employee representatives
  • Jacque de Saint-Exupery, a PSA executive involved with the company’s works council and the corporate finance team, will be the board’s second employee representative.
  • Andrea Agnelli is Elkann’s cousin and a member of the family that controls FCA.
  • Nicolas Dufourcq is general manager of France’s Bpifrance investment fund.
  • Ann Godbehere is a former financial executive and a board director of Royal Dutch Shell
  • Wan Ling Martello is a former executive at Nestle
  • Kevin Scott is chief technical officer at Microsoft

The new board’s independent members were chosen specifically for their diverse professional backgrounds, according to PSA and FCA. The partners say the goal is to foster a “dynamic and innovative” spirit for a “new era of mobility.”

What’s Ahead?

For Manley, we don’t know yet.

For Stellantis, there’s reason for optimism. PSA and FCA continue to display an unusually sharp desire to create the internal balance they consider essential in making the new company successful.

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