Martin Apfel leaves General Motors after 27 years

Article by Anita Panait, on July 16, 2013

Martin Apfel is leaving his posts as president of GM Southeast Asia, GM Thailand and Chevrolet sales in Thailand to pursue other interest, General Motors has disclosed.  He had been with GM since 1986. His positions will be temporarily filled by two executives. Jim DeLuca, vice president of manufacturing for GM's international operations, will suit up part of Apfel's role, while Mark Barnes, sales and marketing vice president for GM's international operations and chief country operations officer for Africa and Australia, will temporarily lead sales and marketing in Southeast Asia.

Apfel is the second high-level overseas executive at GM to leave the US carmaker in the last few weeks.  Susan Docherty, Chevrolet and Cadillac sales chief in Europe, will leave the carmaker on September 30 after 27 years of service.

On June 25, 2013, GM appointed Alan Batey to serve as the new chief for global Chevrolet, which accounts for over 50% half of the carmaker’s sales around the world. GM has been marketing vehicles in Southeast Asia since before World War II, but remains a quite small player.

GM, however, as well as global carmakers, sees Southeast Asian markets including Indonesia as possible growth engines.  GM currently controls less than 1 percent of the market in Indonesia. GM chief executive Dan Akerson, however, remarked that the US carmaker could increase its current share to between 7 to 10 percent in the future.

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