LONDON -- Rolls-Royce Motor Cars has appointed the head of Mini in China, Henrik Wilhelmsmeyer, as director of sales and marketing for the ultraluxury brand.
Wilhelmsmeyer, 46, takes over from Finton Knight, who has left the company, and will start his new job April 3, Rolls-Royce said in a statement.
"Henrik has an exceptional track record and unique first-hand understanding of the global luxury business," Rolls-Royce CEO Torsten Mueller-Oetvoes said in the statement.
Wilhelmsmeyer has led Mini in China since 2014. Prior to that he was director of the China region for Rolls-Royce.
Wilhelmsmeyer began at the BMW Group in 1994, specializing in manufacturing from kits and logistics. He moved to China in 2006 and while there switched to sales roles, becoming head of dealer development for BMW China in 2008. He was promoted to BMW's head of the South China region in 2010 before moving to the Rolls-Royce China position in 2012.
His predecessor, Knight, left Rolls-Royce earlier this year take another role in the car industry, Knight told Automotive News Europe. He didn't disclose where.
Knight was appointed to the job at the BMW-owned brand in 2014 after working for rival Audi for almost 20 years. He replaced Jolyon Nash, who left Rolls-Royce to head up global sales for McLaren Automotive.
Rolls-Royce sales dropped 16 percent last year to 3,362 cars after posting its second-highest sales result in 2016 of 4,011 cars. The company said the fall was due to the end of production of the Phantom flagship sedan. Deliveries of the new model have already started.
This year Rolls-Royce launches its first ever SUV, the Cullinan. The car will be unveiled at the beginning of May.