RENNES, France -- PSA Group's new head of sales and marketing, Stephen Norman, will lead an overhaul of the automaker's commercial operations to improve synergies between its Peugeot, Citroen and DS brands.
Norman, a former top executive at Renault, was promoted to head PSA's newly created group sales and marketing office last month after holding a consulting role with the French automaker since 2014.
Norman will expand PSA's digital sales operations, in addition to overhauling the company's global sales and commercial operations, the company said in a statement.
Norman said the digitization of PSA's sales and marketing operations will be a key task. "Everything has to lead to a distribution model that includes transacting online," Norman told Automotive News Europe in a telephone interview.
Norman disagreed with criticism from some industry watchers that PSA's sales and marketing efforts are disjointed across its three brands.
"I would not say PSA's marketing efforts are especially fragmented or more fragmented than competitors, but we could certainly do better," Norman said. "We will have to move more quickly in the future."
Norman said another of his tasks will be to assess talent across the group's marketing operations worldwide. "PSA hired me to look around the world and determine who has the right technical talent and who does not," he said.
Norman's role and the new group-wide position sales and marketing department could help PSA to harmonize the positioning of the company's three brands, said Jamel Taganza, an analyst for industry researchers Inovev.
"PSA's main marketing challenge is that the different Peugeot, Citroen and DS brands are not clearly defined and positioned on the market," Taganza said. "DS tries to be a premium brand when Peugeot and Citroen could be still considered as generalist brands. In some cases, Peugeot could compete with DS in its premium positioning or Citroen could be considered as a low-price brand for some models."
Norman is a former colleague of PSA CEO Carlos Tavares at Renault when Tavares was Renault's chief operating officer and Norman was marketing chief.
Norman is an auto industry veteran who has worked in the UK, France and Italy. He started his career in 1976 with the Rover Group, where he rose to become marketing director. He has previously served as head of Volkswagen in France and as Fiat's global marketing boss.