Thomas Schafer appointed as new Skoda Auto board chairman

Thomas has got more than 25 years of experience in the automotive field and has been dealing with major German car brands like Daimler AG as well as Volkswagen in his career.

By:August 5, 2020 12:04 PM

After Berhnard Maier stepped down as the chairman of Skoda Auto a few weeks ago, Thomas Schafer has taken his place. Bernhard has been at the helm of things from at Skoda Auto from the last five years. Thomas is a qualified mechanical engineer and started his career in 1991 with Daimler AG. Over the years, with Daimler, he has held various positions in places like South Africa, the US as well as Germany. In 2002, he became a founder member of Daimler Chrysler Malaysia. He was the board member for technology and oversaw supplier, production and sales there till 2005. Between 2005-2012, he was posted in Daimler Germany. Here he catered to the emerging markets wherein the customer centres, vehicle deliveries as well as global xKD. All logistics and planning for foreign plants was also catered to by him.

The new Mercedes-Benz plant built in China, with cooperation from BAIC was also under his supervision. In 2012 though, Thomas joined the Volkswagen Group and became the international production head. From 2015, he served as the chairman and MD of Volkswagen Group, South Africa. During his five-year tenure, dealer profitability, sales network expansion as well as other duties were handled by him. It is said that due to his leadership, the Volkswagen Group has been able to get a firm hold in the sub-Sahara region. Multiple new cooperation agreements were also signed in his presence to further the cause of mobility in the African region.

In India, Skoda Auto leads the Volkswagen Group. Currently, the brand is concentrating on SUVs and it is likely that the Volkswagen new products will be SUVs. Skoda on the other hand has got the updated Rapid, Superb and Octavia RS245 models in the sedan category while in the SUVs, there is the Karoq. Skoda will bring in the Kodiaq petrol as well in the coming months.


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