American Honda has named marketing chief Mike Accavitti to the newly created role of general manager of the Acura Division. He is currently responsible for marketing and product planning as senior vice president of automobile operations at American Honda. In his new role, he will be in charge of all sales, marketing and parts and service operations for Acura in North America, but will give up his product-planning duties and oversight of national marketing for the Honda brand.
On the other hand, Acura sales chief Jeff Conrad will be named as senior vice president at American Honda and will become general manager of the Honda Division. He will be in charge of all sales and marketing efforts for the Honda brand.
The moves are part of Honda’s efforts to restructure its North American sales and marketing operation that will lead to separate divisions for the Honda and Acura brands. The Honda and Acura divisions will be housed under a single operation -- American Honda Auto Division – and will led by American Honda sales chief John Mendel.
Conrad and Accavitti will report to Mendel. The changes are effective April 1, which is the start of Honda’s new fiscal year. The move will align Honda-Acura closer with the structure used by Toyota-Lexus, Nissan-Infiniti and Volkswagen-Audi. “This is going to group major activities for the Honda and Acura brands under dedicated brand leaders, allowing us to respond to the marketplace, focus on the customer and really do so with greater speed and efficiency,” Mendel said in a conference call.
"Our goal is to accelerate the already strong sales growth of the Honda and Acura brands through a more cohesive strategy, with a heightened focus on the unique needs of luxury and mainstream customers," said Mendel. "These moves will more completely align the major activities for the Honda and Acura brands under dedicated brand leaders to take advantage of new opportunities in the marketplace with greater speed and efficiency." [source: Acura]