Ford dealers hope newly appointed Canada CEO Dean Stoneley — who is a Canadian — will remain at the helm longer than his predecessor, especially as the company undergoes a US $11-billion global restructuring and revamps its product lineup.
The Burlington, Ont., native on Feb. 1 replaced Mark Buzzell, who became Ford’s North American head of fleet, lease and remarketing after only two years in Canada.
Stoneley, a 27-year Ford veteran, most recently served as the marketing director for Changan, the automaker’s national dealer sales distribution joint venture in China.
Dan DeBoer, the past co-chair on the Ford dealer council and dealer principal at Parkway Ford in Waterloo, Ont., said he hoped having a Canadian at the helm of Ford Canada was an indication that the company intends to keep Stoneley in that role for a longer period.
“He (Stoneley) indicated [on a phone call] that this was a job he wanted,” DeBoer said. “I can see him as a Canadian in this role for more than the standard three years, which will be good for continuity.”
DeBoer said communications between Ford Canada and the dealer network suffered as the company sorted out how staffing cuts mandated by U.S. headquarters would affect Canada. In recent months, he said Buzzell, who hails from the United States, had begun to rebuild the lines of communication, which “weren’t what they had been in the past.”
BUZZELL’S BRIEF STINT