DETROIT — It's taken Jim Farley less than one year as Ford CEO to accomplish what his two immediate predecessors could not over six: reverse the company's long stock slide.
There is much still to fix, including problematic launches of high-profile vehicles, money-losing overseas markets and slumping U.S. sales amid the coronavirus pandemic and global microchip shortage.
But Farley, 59, has changed the narrative surrounding the 118-year-old automaker by exciting Wall Street with a vision of profitable, electrified products and software services that generate recurring revenue to insulate Ford from the industry's traditional ebbs and flows. He has reshaped Ford to emphasize commercial vehicles and technology development, elevating insiders to new roles and plucking talent from the likes of eBay and Apple.
"It's been so long since we had a reasonable sense of confidence in Ford's EV/AV/mobility strategy," Adam Jonas, an analyst with Morgan Stanley, wrote in an investor note this month. "Still a ton of work to do. ... However, we see the pieces coming together and the collection of human talent to turn the vision into execution."