Daniel Ninivaggi replaces Kevin Freeland as Federal-Mogul co-CEO

Article by Anita Panait, on February 10, 2014

Kevin Freeland is exiting Federal-Mogul Corp. as one of its co-chief executives due to personal reasons, the company said in a statement. Freeland assumed the role in May 2014. Freeland will be replaced by board member Daniel Ninivaggi, who is also affiliated with the supplier’s controlling shareholder Carl Icahn.

The supplier also named Ninivaggi as CEO of its aftermarket group.  Ninivaggi is the third executive to hold the post in less than two years. Rainer Jueckstock remains the other co-CEO. Ninivaggi had served as president and CEO of Icahn Enterprises LP since 2010. He also had leadership roles at Tropicana Entertainment Inc. and has sat on boards of a number of Icahn-controlled companies like XO Holdings Inc. and Viskase Companies Inc.

Before joining Icahn, Ninivaggi was a counsel for Winston & Strawn LLP and held various executive roles at Lear Corp. like general counsel, chief administrative officer and executive vice president. Ninivaggi has an MBA from the University of Chicago and a law degree from Stanford Law School. Federal-Mogul emerged from bankruptcy in 2008 and reported net losses of $45 million and $117 million in 2009 and 2012, respectively.

The supplier initiated significant cost-cutting strategies in 2013, like the closure or downsizing of seven sites and a divestiture. In June that year, Federal-Mogul sold its connecting rod and camshaft business to JD Norman Industries Inc. These measures allowed the company to post $38 million in net income in the third quarter of 2013.

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