MUNICH -- Opel CEO Nick Reilly has added a German politician, Volker Hoff, and a former Ford Motor Co. communications executive, Susanne Wegerhoff, to his new management team.
Hoff's role as vice president of government affairs for Opel will be a key position as the General Motors Co. unit seeks 2.7 billion euros in loans or loan guarantees from European countries where Opel and British sister brand Vauxhall have factories including Germany, Spain and the UK. The aid will help fund a restructuring of the money-losing unit.
Hoff has been a member of parliament in the German state of Hesse since 1991. Opel's headquarters are in Hesse in Russelsheim, near Frankfurt. Between 2006 and 2009, he was a minister in the Hesse state government.
Hoff replaces Tayce Wakefield, a Canadian, who has elected to retire from GM after a 25-year career with the company in Canada, the United States and Europe.
“Volker Hoff is a high-profile political figurehead who has closely followed Opel from his positions in the Hesse government and parliament,” Reilly said in a statement.
Hoff said: “Becoming part of the leadership team that is moving Opel forward is like a boyhood dream come true.”
Hoff's predecessor, Wakefield, joined GM in 1984 in the company's government relations department and held progressively responsible positions.