Christian Blank is Mazda’s new head of European fleet operations

Article by Christian Andrei, on May 4, 2011

Christian Blank has been named head of European fleet operations at Mazda Motor Europe effective May 2, 2011, replacing James Hopkins, who is leaving the company. Formerly a senior manager in charge of the company’s relationships with European independent distributor partners, Blank has been valuable in forming Mazda's long term strategy in Europe.

Blank will be based in Leverkusen, Germany, and he will be reporting to Martin Benders, who is the vice president for sales operations.

According to Benders, the overall strategy of the Mazda Fleet has not changed with the appointment of Blank. However, the company will be increasing its focus on total cost of ownership as well as residual value management to support the successful launch of its next-generation products.

Before working in Mazda, Blank worked as a private business consultant in Japan as well as a vehicle analyst for Roland Berger strategy consultants.

Blank, as European fleet operations head, is responsible for the development of the company’s residual value management strengths as well as the growth of the business with leading business fleet operations and major leasing companies.

Mr. Benders stated that with Christian Blank coming in, there are no alterations to the entire Mazda Fleet strategy. Nonetheless, he also mentioned that there will be more attention paid to residual value management and total cost of ownership in order to facilitate a prosperous debut for succeeding products.

He also asserted that at present, Mazda has “the most fuel-efficient, best-equipped and appealing” line-up. Additionally, Mr. Benders said that the introduction of the Mazda CX-5 at the Frankfurt Motor Show and the rest of their 6th generation products will further positively contribute to their European fleet’s strong presence.

The Mazda CX-5 is a C-segment SUV that incorporates all of the latest SKYACTIV technologies, such as the new-generation engines, transmissions, chassis and body. It is designed to be especially suited to the needs of business consumers. The European Fleet team is not just paying attention to Mazda’s residual value management development, but also to ongoing support operations throughout the major European markets. Their strategy is to build upon existing relationships with Europe’s most prominent blue chip fleets and leasing companies.

Press Release

Mazda names new Head of European Fleet Organisation

Mazda Motor Europe announced the appointment today of Christian Blank (38) to the position of Director, European Fleet Operations. He is replacing James Hopkins who has left Mazda to take up a new opportunity. Mr. Blank will report to Martin Benders, Vice President, Sales Operations.

Mr. Blank was formerly Senior Manager in charge of Mazda’s European business with its independent distributor partners, and has been heavily involved in a number of special projects including the development of the long term strategy for Europe. Prior to coming on board, Mr. Blank worked as an automotive consultant at Roland Berger. After this, he built-up the Tokyo office of a specialized consultancy, which advised international businesses expanding into Germany.

“The overall Mazda Fleet strategy has not changed with Christian Blank’s appointment,” said Mr. Benders. “We will however increase our focus on residual value management and total cost of ownership to support a successful launch of our next-generation products. We currently have the most fuel-efficient, best-equipped and appealing Mazda line-up ever. On top of that, the launch of our 6th generation products, starting with the Mazda CX-5 debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show, will enable us to further strengthen our fleet business in Europe.

This C-segment SUV featuring the full range of breakthrough SKYACTIV technologies including new-generation engines, transmissions, body and chassis – will be particularly well suited for our business customers." Besides the new focus on developing Mazda’s residual value management capability, the European Fleet team will continue to support operations in all major European markets by growing pan-European relationships with leading leasing companies and large blue chip fleets.

Topics: mazda, europe

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