Bentley poaches Jaguar Land Rover boss to be new CEO

Adrian Hallmark

One of the architects of Jaguar Land Rover’s success has been poached by luxury rival Bentley to be its new chairman and CEO.

Adrian Hallmark, 55, who had served as JLR’s global strategy director since 2013, will take up his new position at the iconic Crewe carmaker from February 1, 2018.

Hallmark is no stranger to Bentley as prior to JLR he served as board member for sales, marketing and PR.

His return to the VW-owned business rounds off a major overhaul of its senior management, which has seen four senior leadership changes with new board members for engineering; sales and marketing; and people, digitalisation and IT.

Hallmark brings more than 18 years of automotive board level experience from the US, Europe and Asia with Porsche, Volkswagen, Saab and Bentley Motors. During his time at Bentley he played an integral role in the introduction of the successful Continental GT in 2003.

Matthias Müller, chief executive of the Volkswagen Group, said: “Adrian brings a wealth of international automotive experience coupled with a deep understanding of the Bentley brand and I am confident he will lead this extraordinary British company to even greater success.”

Hallmark succeeds Wolfgang Dürheimer, 59, who will continue to take a key role advising Volkswagen Group motorsport.

In other key appointments, Dr Werner Tietz, 54, will become board member for engineering, joining from Porsche where he held the role of vice president body & trim engineering. He succeeds Rolf Frech, 60, who guided the engineering team for six years.

Chris Craft, 58, becomes board member for sales and marketing, succeeding Dr Andreas Offermann, 60. Prior to this appointment, Craft led Porsche Great Britain as managing director. Before this, he was director of Volkswagen UK, director of Skoda UK and has also held senior management roles during his 24 year career with the Volkswagen Group.

Dr Astrid Fontaine, 48, previously vice president of human resources, culture and inovation at Porsche North America, will become board member for people, digitalisation and IT.