EUROPEAN OPERATIONS HEAD
Emilio Herrera, 58
Chief Operating Officer, Kia Motors Europe
TITLE: Chief Operating Officer
COMPANY: Kia Europe
BASED: Frankfurt, Germany
Herrera started his automotive career at Chrysler Europe and worked at Fiat Belgium before moving to Kia Europe in December 2011. He served as managing director for Kia’s operations in Iberia from December 2012 until April 2018. During that period Kia became the fastest-growing volume brand in Spain, with sales more than doubling between 2013 and 2017. He was promoted to his current post in April 2018.
REASON FOR WINNING
Under Herrera, Kia has continued its rise in Europe. The automaker increased European sales 6.2 percent last year and Kia’s deliveries in the region were up another 1.6 percent through June in a market that was down by 3.1 percent, according to figures from industry association ACEA. Kia is beating the market because of demand for models such as the Sportage and Stonic crossovers. Herrera is also seeing dividends from the successful electrification of the Kia range, led by models such as the Optima plug-in hybrid and the full-electric e-Niro.