(LONDON, ENGLAND) – With reference to the health of Sergio Marchionne, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles communicates with profound sorrow that during the course of this week unexpected complications arose while Marchionne was recovering from surgery and that these have worsened significantly in recent hours.
“I am profoundly saddened to learn of Sergio’s state of health. It is a situation that was unthinkable until a few hours ago, and one that leaves us all with a real sense of injustice,” said John Elkann, the chairman of Exor. “My first thoughts go to Sergio and his family.”
As a consequence, Marchionne will be unable to return to work.
“Over the past 14 years together we have lived through successes and difficulties, internal and external crises, but also unique and unrepeatable moments, both personal and professional,” said Elkman. “For so many, Sergio has been an enlightened leader and a matchless point of reference. For me, he has been someone with whom to share thoughts and in whom to trust, a mentor and above all a true friend.”
The Board of Directors of FCA, meeting today, firstly expressed its closeness to Sergio Marchionne and his family and underlined the extraordinary contribution, both human and professional, that he has made to the company in these years.
“He taught us that the only question that’s worth asking oneself at the end of every day is whether we have been able to change something for the better, whether we have been able to make a difference,” Elkman said. “And Sergio has always made a difference, wherever his work took him and in the lives of so very many people.”
The board resolved to accelerate the CEO transition process that has been proceeding over the past months and named Mike Manley as CEO. The board will therefore propose to the next shareholder meeting, to be called in the coming days, that he be elected to the Board and serve as an executive director of the company.
“The succession plans we have just announced, even if not without pain from a personal point of view, mean we can guarantee the maximum possible continuity, preserving our companies’ unique cultures,” Elkman explained.
In the meantime, in order to provide for his full authority and operational continuity for the company, the board has with immediate effect granted Manley all the powers of CEO. He will also assume responsibility for the NAFTA region.
Manley and his management team will proceed with the implementation of the 2018–22 business plan as presented on June 1 of this year, a plan that will further assure FCA’s strong and independent future.