Nissan hires Derrick Hatami as VP of US sales

Article by Anita Panait, on January 9, 2014

Nissan has tapped Derrick Hatami, general manager of Hyundai Motor America's 12-state western region, to become its vice president of US sales effective January 13, 2014. The hiring of Hatami is part of Nissan’s bid to reorganize its North American management structure. Hatami will report to Fred Diaz, Nissan senior vice president for U.S. sales, marketing, parts and service, Nissan said in a statement.

Hatami will be in charge of sales, vehicle operations, light commercial vehicles and fleet functions under Diaz. Hatami helped Hyundai increase its market share in the region from 4.5 percent market share to 7.8 percent. Nissan is aiming to capture a 10 percent market share in US and surpass Honda as the No. 2 Asian brand in the country.

Nissan started reorganizing its management team late 2013 after Nissan chief executive Carlos Ghosn expressed frustration that it was not making quick enough progress. Nissan Division had a 7.3 percent U.S. market share for 2013, up from 7.1 percent in 2012.

Under the new management team, Diaz reports to Jose Munoz, chairman for Nissan in North America. Hatami also helped Hyundai formulate its growth strategies in the past decade. Sitting on corporate posts in strategic planning and sales planning, Hatami played vital roles in setting Hyundai vehicle prices, incentive programs, long-term business plans and certified pre-owned efforts.

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