Geoff Polites, chief executive officer of Jaguar Land Rover, has died peacefully in his home country of Australia. He was 60.
Mr. Polites, who is credited with leading the team that returned the
Jaguar Land Rover business back to profitability and successfully
steering it through its ongoing sale process to Tata Motors, had been
battling serious illness for the past two years.
untimely passing robs his family and friends of a man who was a real
inspiration to us all,” said Alan Mulally, president and chief
executive officer, Ford Motor Company. “His drive and determination,
combined with his clear sense of vision for the business, played a huge
role in turning round the business at Jaguar Land Rover and returning
it to profitability. Geoff ensured that Jaguar Land Rover was not
distracted and continued to focus on the fundamentals of the business
during the recent sale process, despite at the time also fighting his
own personal health battle.
“He was a trusted colleague and
someone who was much respected not just by his peers but by all who had
the privilege to work with him. Our sympathies are with his wife and
family at this difficult time,” said Mulally.
executive vice president responsible for Ford Motor Company’s
businesses in Europe, said: “For many of us at Ford and Jaguar Land
Rover, we’ve lost not just a respected colleague but a great friend.
“Geoff was always someone to look up to throughout his almost 40-year
career in the automotive industry. His passion for the car business was
legend, but the resolve he showed since taking over as CEO of Jaguar
Land Rover in 2005 was something very special.
of the team that has put the Jaguar Land Rover business back into
profitability has been exceptional. Geoff has given Jaguar Land Rover
the solid foundation and established the strong management team it
needs for a successful future. We will miss our friend very much.”
David Smith, Jaguar Land Rover’s chief financial officer, will take
over as the acting chief executive officer at Jaguar Land Rover until a
successor is appointed.