September 3, 2003
Canadian head of Mitsubishi N.A. replaced with ex-Hyundai chief
Cypress, California – Mitsubishi Motors North America has replaced its CEO, Canadian Pierre Gagnon, with the former head of Hyundai Motor America, Finbarr O’Neill, effective immediately.
O’Neill spent 18 years at Hyundai Motor America, where he is widely credited with orchestrating a dramatic corporate turnaround following his promotion to president and CEO in 1998. O’Neill, 51, currently serves as the chairman of the board of the Association of International Automobile Manufacturers.
Gagnon, who joined Mitsubishi Motors in 1997, had been appointed president and CEO of MMNA in July 2002. Gagnon helped drive the consolidation of all Mitsubishi Motors’ North American operations into a single organization. He was also instrumental in revitalizing the brand image in North America. However, this year, the company has experienced a slump in vehicle sales and a downgrading of its credit rating.