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Ford: Sales, Marketing, and Financial News

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Ford: Sales, Marketing, and Financial News

 
Old 10-11-2005, 01:34 AM
  #41  
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Well they want a turnaround....for starters bring over the GOOD cars they sell only Europe to the US....
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Old 10-11-2005, 10:31 AM
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Boy oh boy...
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Old 10-11-2005, 10:48 AM
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It's amazing that all these highly paid auto executives know nothing about joe consumer. You could plop any true enthusiast into those positions, give them some real power, and move mountains.

They'll just keep putting grumpy old accountants into those positions.

These people just don't get it.
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Old 10-11-2005, 12:54 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by The Sarlacc
Well they want a turnaround....for starters bring over the GOOD cars they sell only Europe to the US....
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Old 10-11-2005, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by KilroyR1
It's amazing that all these highly paid auto executives know nothing about joe consumer. You could plop any true enthusiast into those positions, give them some real power, and move mountains.

They'll just keep putting grumpy old accountants into those positions.

These people just don't get it.
It's true. I sometimes think that I could do it better when I see some of the moves they make. But what tje hell do I know.

Any changes they make in management won't be seen in new cars for probably 3-5 years.
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Old 10-11-2005, 08:02 PM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by KilroyR1
It's amazing that all these highly paid auto executives know nothing about joe consumer. You could plop any true enthusiast into those positions, give them some real power, and move mountains.

They'll just keep putting grumpy old accountants into those positions.

These people just don't get it.
I'm pretty sure all these high-end people have their network. The CEO of the hospital I work at was relinquished of his duties by the board of trustees a year ago and last I checked he bounced right back and is now running another hospital.
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Old 01-18-2006, 12:03 PM
  #47  
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Ford's "Way Forward" Plan **Ford offers $100,000 buyouts (page 2)**

WJR Auto Report: Ford's Day of Reckoning - - Source: The Car Connection

We're just days away from the big announcement at Ford Motor Co. If all the leaks and rumors prove true, the automaker will soon announce plans to close as many as ten major parts and assembly plants and trim up to 35,000 jobs. There's no question Ford needs to right-size its operations. It simply has too much production capacity and too many employees. But the automaker also can't just cost-cut its way back to prosperity. The so-called "Way Forward" turnaround plan will only work if the automaker can start turning out the sort of products consumers not only want, but are willing to buy without hefty, profit-busting incentives. Insiders warn that the real challenge facing Ford is its own corporate culture. The automaker's highly politicized structure tends to act like quicksand, slowing things down, even drowning many a good idea. Developing a lean, nimble organization is one of the most important goals for Mark Fields, Ford's president of the Americas. It will also prove a lot more difficult than simply closing plants.
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Old 01-18-2006, 12:04 PM
  #48  
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Insiders warn that the real challenge facing Ford is its own corporate culture. The automaker's highly politicized structure tends to act like quicksand, slowing things down, even drowning many a good idea.
Exactly! That's exactly what's wrong with GM also.
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Old 01-18-2006, 12:25 PM
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Originally Posted by gavriil
Exactly! That's exactly what's wrong with GM also.
Large companies that have been in business 100 years tend to think like this. I still hold hope for both companies. I know they can engineer with the best, but management is what is going to make or break them.
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Old 01-18-2006, 06:59 PM
  #50  
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It's about the car, stupid (directed at Ford)!

Now where do I sign up for one of the new 475 horsepower Mustang GT500's?
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Old 01-18-2006, 07:18 PM
  #51  
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It's nearly a foregone conclusion that my aunt will be facing involuntary retirement.
Of course, working at Ford thesedays has been so difficult recently, she hopes that they just say bye.
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Old 01-22-2006, 10:38 PM
  #52  
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Plant Closings, Job Cuts Loom at Ford - - By Dee-Ann Durbin, AP Auto Writer - - Source: yahoo.com

DETROIT (AP) -- Ford Motor Co., hurt by falling sales of sport utility vehicles, is expected to close plants and cut thousands of jobs in North America as part of a restructuring program to be announced Monday.


Ford has refused to release details of the plan, dubbed the "Way Forward," which also is expected to include product changes and cuts to Ford's salaried ranks. Ford has about 87,000 hourly workers and 35,000 salaried workers in North America.

"It's going to be painful for some people," Ford Chairman and CEO Bill Ford said earlier this month at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

The assembly plants believed to be most at risk for closure are in St. Louis; St. Paul, Minn.; Atlanta; Wixom, Mich.; St. Thomas, Ontario; and Cuatitlan, Mexico. Those plants could be targeted because of their age, the products they make, their lack of flexibility or other factors.

States were scrambling to offer tax credits and other incentives to keep Ford from closing their facilities.

Earlier this month, Missouri Gov. Matt Blunt and other state officials flew to Ford's headquarters in Dearborn for a meeting with Ford executives. Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm said she outlined a package of incentives to Ford last week. Granholm wouldn't disclose the details of the package and said she wasn't given any assurance that Michigan plants would be spared.

Ford is expected to report a worldwide profit for 2005 when it releases earnings Monday. But it lost more than $1.4 billion in its North American operations in the first nine months of last year.

The No. 2 U.S. automaker has been hurt by falling sales of its profitable sport utility vehicles, growing health care and materials costs and labor contracts that have limited its ability to close plants and cut jobs. The United Auto Workers union will have to agree to some of the changes Ford wants to make.

"We don't like to see any jobs go away," UAW President Ron Gettelfinger said last week. "We're always in hope that down the road we'll be able to reverse some of those decisions."

Ford also has seen its U.S. market share slide as a result of increasing competition from foreign rivals. The company suffered its tenth straight year of market share losses in the United States in 2005, and for the first time in 19 years, Ford lost its crown as America's best-selling brand to GM's Chevrolet. Ford sold about 2.9 million vehicles for a market share of 17.4 percent in 2005, down from 18.3 percent the year before and 24 percent in 1990.

The restructuring is Ford's second in four years. Under the first plan, Ford closed five plants and cut 35,000 jobs, but its North American operations failed to turn around.

Ford used just 79 percent of its North American plant capacity in 2005, down from 86 percent in 2004, according to preliminary numbers released last week by Harbour Consulting Inc., a firm that measures plant productivity. By contrast, rival Toyota Motor Corp. was operating at full capacity.
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Old 01-22-2006, 10:39 PM
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When the news come tomorrow morning, please post here...
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Old 01-22-2006, 11:42 PM
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Originally Posted by KilroyR1
Now where do I sign up for one of the new 475 horsepower Mustang GT500's?
That's a disappointment.
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Old 01-23-2006, 12:04 AM
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Originally Posted by slyraskal
That's a disappointment.
What's a disappointment? A badge? The GT500 has a lot more power than what Ford rated it at.
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Old 01-23-2006, 12:15 AM
  #56  
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Originally Posted by Maximized
What's a disappointment? A badge? The GT500 has a lot more power than what Ford rated it at.
I just heard people were complaining that the GT500 didn't live up to it's badge by having less than 500 ponies. That's all.

Kinda like the old Z had 300 hp, but the new one was under 300 hp and they rebadged it using the # of litres.

I guess people like to keep somethings the way they were for nostalga's sake. And for select things I do agree.
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Old 01-23-2006, 10:05 AM
  #57  
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Unhappy Update

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060123/...kxBHNlYwN0bQ--

Ford to Cut 25,000 to 30,000 Jobs by 2012

By DEE-ANN DURBIN, AP Auto Writer 13 minutes ago

DEARBORN, Mich. - Ford Motor Co., the nation's second-largest automaker, said Monday that it will cut 25,000 to 30,000 jobs and idle 14 facilities by 2012 as part of a restructuring designed to reverse a $1.6 billion loss last year in its North American operations.

The cuts represent 20 percent to 25 percent of Ford's North American work force of 122,000 people. Ford has approximately 87,000 hourly workers and 35,000 salaried workers in the region.

Plants to be idled through 2008 include the St. Louis, Atlanta and Michigan's Wixom assembly plants and Batavia Transmission in Ohio. Windsor Casting in Ontario also will be idled, as was previously announced following contract negotiations with the
Canadian Auto Workers. Another two assembly plants to be idled will be determined later this year, the company said.
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Old 01-23-2006, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by slyraskal
I just heard people were complaining that the GT500 didn't live up to it's badge by having less than 500 ponies. That's all.

Kinda like the old Z had 300 hp, but the new one was under 300 hp and they rebadged it using the # of litres.

I guess people like to keep somethings the way they were for nostalga's sake. And for select things I do agree.
A very reputable source stated that Ford under-rated the 500 and it will make a boat load more than 500 at the crank. Back on topic...
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Old 01-23-2006, 10:26 AM
  #59  
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This should have been done years ago. ANYONE could have forseen that relying on SUV's for profits wouldnt last forever and was extremely vulnerable to oil prices.
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Old 01-23-2006, 10:29 AM
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Ford needs to do this a lot more quickly. The article above stated they used just 79% of their plant capacity. It should be up in the high 90 percentile.
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Old 01-23-2006, 10:34 AM
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From: Media.Ford.Com


QUOTE(FORD FIGHTS BACK)
Bill Ford: “Ford Motor Company was solidly profitable in 2005 and growing around the world. The next chapter in our history will be remembered for a renewed commitment to innovation and as the time we moved boldly to prepare Ford’s North American business for global competition.”

Comprehensive North American “Way Forward” plan focuses every part of the business on the customer – to build stronger Ford, Lincoln and Mercury brands, a strengthened product lineup and far greater quality, competitive costs and improved productivity.

Product investments will result in new vehicles in new segments to reach more customers – including small cars and more crossovers – while maintaining Ford’s truck leadership.

Ford is committed to stabilizing its U.S. market share in the near term.
Competitive cost structure includes net material cost reductions of at least $6 billion by 2010.

Productivity improvements leverage the company’s global product development scale and lean and flexible manufacturing system to introduce more products faster.

Straightforward vehicle pricing will continue to be introduced with new models.

North American capacity is realigned to match demand – with 14 manufacturing facilities to be idled – resulting in significant cost savings and reduced employment of 25,000-30,000.

Salary-related costs are being cut 10 percent in North America with the previously announced reduction of the equivalent of 4,000 salaried positions by the end of the first quarter. In addition, the company’s officer ranks are being reduced 12 percent by the end of the first quarter.

Ford is planning a new low-cost manufacturing site for the future.

North American automotive profitability is achieved no later than 2008.

Beginning in 2006, Ford Motor Company will no longer provide earnings guidance – to keep the company and investors focused on one goal: sustainable profitability over time in all regions.

DEARBORN, Mich., Jan. 23, 2006 - Ford Motor Company [NYSE: F] today announced details of a comprehensive plan to restore profitability to its automotive business in North America no later than 2008. Ford will apply lessons learned from consumers and the company’s successes around the world to strengthen its Ford, Lincoln and Mercury brands and deliver more innovative products while simultaneously reducing costs and improving quality and productivity.

“The automotive market in North America is rapidly becoming as crowded and fragmented as other global markets,” said Bill Ford, chairman and CEO. “To meet this challenge, we are acting with speed to strengthen the Ford, Lincoln and Mercury brands, deliver the innovation customers demand and create a business structure for us to compete – and win – in this era of global competition.


“We will be making painful sacrifices to protect Ford’s heritage and secure our future,” he added. “Going forward, we will be able to deliver more innovative products, better returns for our shareholders and stability in the communities where we operate.”


Ford Around the World – 2006 Outlook

For 2006, the company is expecting another year of profitability from automotive operations outside of North America . Pre-tax profits, excluding special items, are expected from automotive operations in South America , Europe (Ford of Europe and Premier Automotive Group), Asia-Pacific and Africa , and from Mazda and Associated Operations. North American automotive operations are expected to be unprofitable. Overall, Ford’s global automotive operations are expected to have pre-tax losses in 2006, while Ford Motor Credit is expected to achieve pre-tax profits.


The underlying assumptions behind this outlook include: full-year industry volumes of 17 million units in the U.S. and 17.3 million units in Europe ; industry net pricing that is expected to be down slightly in the U.S. and Europe . Also, the company’s quality performance is expected to improve, market share is expected to stabilize or improve in all regions, and cost performance is expected to be favorable. Capital expenditures of approximately $7 billion are expected during 2006, while the company expects its year-end cash balance to be more than $20 billion.


Beyond the above expectations, the company is providing no other guidance about its financial performance for 2006 – to keep employees and investors focused on one goal: sustainable profitability over time in all regions.


“We must be guided by our long-term goals of building our brands, satisfying customers, developing strong products, accelerating innovation, and, most importantly, producing a sustainable profit from our automotive business,” said Bill Ford.


Ford in North America – the Way Forward

Ford’s automotive business in North America was profitable in 2003 and 2004, thanks to the product investments and cost reductions driven by the company’s Revitalization Plan, announced in 2002.

Since that time, more and stronger competition in all segments, a faster-than-expected customer shift from traditional SUVs into other segments, significantly higher material and energy costs and other factors have resulted in lower market share and higher costs for the company.


“The team in North America , led by Mark Fields and supported by Anne Stevens, developed the plan for North America , drawing on their extensive global experience in Asia , Europe and The Americas. They have reenergized the Ford team to make it work, and they have the full support of the Ford Motor Company behind them,” said Jim Padilla, president and chief operating officer.


Fields, executive vice president and president, The Americas, calls the plan the “Way Forward.” It touches every piece of the North American business to make it more customer-focused, product-driven and efficient, including:


More clarity for the Ford, Lincoln and Mercury brands – with a sharper focus on the customer and a clear point of view that will appeal to more buyers than today.

A renewed commitment to design, safety and technology innovation to differentiate Ford Motor Company and its products in the marketplace.

New product investments – utilizing Ford’s global architectures and scale – to deliver more new products faster, including more crossovers, hybrid vehicles, new small cars, increased spending on Ford’s truck leadership and new “white space” products.

Material cost reductions of at least $6 billion by 2010.

Continued straightforward pricing that is clear, credible and simple, which will further improve residual values.

A lean and flexible manufacturing system combined with capacity matched to demand. Capacity will be reduced by 1.2 million units or 26 percent by 2008, representing the majority of actions within the plan’s 2006-2012 period.

Plant-related employment is reduced by 25,000-30,000 people in the 2006-2012 time period, in addition to salaried personnel reductions and a reduction in the company’s officer ranks.

Stronger Ford, Lincoln and Mercury Brands
Ford kicked off the Way Forward plan in October with a comprehensive analysis of consumer attitudes and values in the U.S. automotive market. The goal was to develop a laser-like focus on different customer targets for Ford, Lincoln and Mercury to guide each brand’s design, engineering and marketing decisions.


“One of the most important findings from this research is that Americans really do want to buy American brands, as long as they are competitive with the imports,” said Fields. “We know this, because it’s already working in some segments today, such as the success of the new Ford Fusion in the import-dominated midsize car market.


“Of all the leading automakers, we believe Ford is America ’s Car Company because of where we’ve been. In terms of economic and social influence, there is no other company that’s had a greater impact on the lives of people in the U.S. and in the 20th century than Ford.”


Customers identify with Ford and its uniquely American story, the research also revealed.


“The challenge going forward is to give our customers, employees, retirees, dealers, suppliers and investors a reason to believe in Ford. That is going to be our focus,” Fields said. “Our Way Forward is not a retreat into smaller markets, but a retaking of the American marketplace. It’s time to play offense. It’s time to fight back.


“We will compete vigorously to be America ’s Car Company, winning the hearts and minds of even more customers,” he added. “We will maintain our commitment to our loyal truck customers, while delivering innovative and boldly styled cars, crossovers, SUVs and other all-new products that will appeal to people who are still inspired by the American dream.”


With that clear point of view in the marketplace, Ford is investing in new products for Ford, Lincoln and Mercury.


The investment includes moving forward with the company’s plan to offer hybrid technology on half of the company’s Ford, Mercury and Lincoln nameplates in the U.S.

Today, the company is announcing that hybrid versions of the Ford Five Hundred, Mercury Montego, Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX will debut in the 2008-2010 timeframe. The new hybrids will join the Ford Escape and Mercury Mariner hybrids, which are on sale today, as well as the Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan hybrids, which will debut in 2008. Overall, Ford Motor Company plans to build 250,000 hybrids a year by 2010.


Ford also is announcing that it will introduce new “white space” products to reach customers in new segments, and accelerate plans to bring even more crossover vehicles and new small cars to market. At the same time, the company announced that it is increasing its product investment in Ford F-Series truck leadership; increasing momentum on its blockbuster cars today, such as the Ford Fusion and Ford Mustang; introducing more design innovations – for more “at a glance” sheet metal changes – and introducing more safety innovations throughout its North American lineup.


“With more focused brands, new product investment and innovation, Ford will slow the rate of loss and then stabilize our U.S. market share in the near term, even as competitors add new models,” Fields said. “From there, we can set our sights on the future.”


TheFord Brand: In the past, the Ford brand has demonstrated a clear customer focus in many – but not all – segments. Going forward, the Ford brand will build upon the success of hits, such as the Ford F-Series, Explorer, Expedition, Mustang, Escape and Fusion, and enter new segments with a clear, consistent and distinct point of view – one driven by bold, American design and innovation. The 2007 Ford Edge, which goes on sale later this year, embodies that spirit.


“We know how to play offense and play to win,” Fields said. “Our plan will deliver more products – from small cars to our largest trucks – that are unmistakably Fords.”


Ford remains committed to maintaining leadership in full-size pickup trucks with the F-Series. The company also plans to continue its momentum in midsize cars – with all-wheel-drive and hybrid derivatives coming for the Ford Fusion – and developing new small cars and even more crossovers for the Ford brand.



Mercury : Ford is recommitting itself to Mercury and has developed more focused positioning that is a refinement of the work already done to revitalize the brand.


The newest Mercury products – the Milan , the Mariner and the Mariner Hybrid – are attracting younger customers to the brand and more women than Ford-brand products in the same segments, Fields said. In addition, they are bringing new customers to Ford Motor Company – at conquest rates as high as 50 percent.

“T he attraction of Mercury is modern, expressive design – one that is differentiated from Ford vehicles. Our Mercury target customer is not looking for product functionality that is substantially different from Ford vehicles. But they do have different attitudes and values, and they want a product that visually communicates that distinctiveness.


“Going forward, we will be more aggressive in appealing to these customers with clear, modern differentiation in the design of Mercurys, a unique purchase experience and marketing that is targeted, personalized and interactive ,” Fields said.


Lincoln : Ford’s vision for the Lincoln brand is to make Lincoln the reward for consumers who are living the American dream. The company sees Lincoln becoming the largest volume contributor to the Lincoln Mercury business.


“ Lincoln customers don’t need to shout about success. They are self-made people with enough confidence to be elegant and understated,” Fields said. “That understanding of the Lincoln customers will drive our brand and product decisions going forward. ”


The 2006 Lincoln Zephyr, the brand’s first entry-luxury car, and the 2007 Lincoln MKX, the brand’s first crossover, are significant first steps. Going forward, the company plans to give Lincoln vehicles an even clearer point of view through their powertrains, unique comfort and convenience features and unique designs.


“ Lincoln is about American luxury. There are many customers in this country living the American dream and who would prefer to drive America ’s luxury car. That is where we are headed ,” he added.

Straightforward Pricing: Ford is accelerating the clear-and-simple pricing strategy that began with the introduction of the Ford Fusion and Ford Mustang. Ford plans to reduce the MSRP of its products and dramatically reduce and cap rebates as it introduces new products.


“ We started introducing clear pricing two years ago. The success of Mustang and Fusion proves that it works,” Fields said. “ We will bring sticker prices more in line with actual transaction prices and cap ‘cash on the hood’ rebates as we introduce new cars and trucks into the marketplace. It will protect our margins and consumers, too, through higher resale values.”


Ford also will increase its product advertising, focusing on brand characteristics based on innovative designs, features and customer benefits.



Investment-Efficient Product Creation

Ford has committed to return its North American automotive business to profitability no later than 2008. Over time, the Way Forward plan should deliver profitability throughout the lineup – including new small cars – by achieving significant material cost savings as well as quality and productivity improvements.


Several new initiatives will bolster ongoing work that already is yielding significant operating improvements. Specifically:


Ford will use more global vehicle architectures in North America , particularly for cars and crossovers, to reduce investment spending and improve quality.

The company will share more parts and systems that are invisible to the customer, such as brakes, suspension and underbody components, across its North American, European and Asian brands to leverage its global purchasing power for lower costs and better quality.

Ford will continue to implement its Global Product Development System – which is based, in part, on Mazda’s highly successful and efficient model – to reduce product development times by six to 12 months, depending on the size of the program.

Ford will continue to invest in lean and flexible manufacturing, with 75 percent of its North American assembly capacity being “flexible” by the end of 2008.

Improved quality will be achieved, in part, through the “Aligned Business Framework” agreements with select strategic suppliers. The agreements are designed to strengthen collaboration and create a more sustainable business model for both Ford and its key suppliers to improve mutual profitability.

The Aligned Business Framework – coupled with Ford’s “Commodity Business Plan” process and a new single-team approach to product development and purchasing – will deliver improved quality and drive technology innovations to Ford, while lowering costs.

“We are committed to developing strong relationships with a select group of more capable, more financially stable strategic suppliers on a long-term basis,” said Anne Stevens, executive vice president and chief operating office, The Americas. “Strong suppliers and proven processes that everyone sticks to religiously go hand in hand with delivering innovation, quality and lower costs.”

Smaller, Nimbler Organization

Achieving a lean fixed-cost structure and significantly improving Ford’s North American assembly capacity utilization are critical components of the Way Forward plan.

“We’re now well past the point in which one or two hit products can correct the overcapacity we have or justify the staffing levels we maintain – even with the significant actions we’ve taken during the past couple of years,” Stevens said. “Sadly, this isn’t just a Ford issue. It’s an issue for our domestic competitors, as well.

“As hard and painful as it is to idle plants and reduce our work force, we know these sacrifices are critical to set the stage for a stronger future,” she added.

Ford is taking the following new actions to align its capacity with expected demand and to reduce fixed costs:


14 manufacturing facilities will be idled and cease production by 2012, including a total of seven vehicle assembly plants.

Assembly capacity will be reduced by 1.2 million units or 26 percent by the end of 2008.

A new low-cost manufacturing site is planned for the future.

Ford will idle the following facilities through 2008:

St. Louis Assembly

Atlanta Assembly

Wixom Assembly

Batavia Transmission

Windsor Casting (announced following CAW contract negotiations in 2005)

Two additional assembly plants, which will be determined later this year

In addition, production at St. Thomas Assembly will be reduced to one shift. Facilities operated by Automotive Components Holding LLC are not included in the new announcement.

All of these actions will reduce total North American employment by 25,000-30,000 people in the 2006-2012 time period. This is in addition to the previously announced reduction of the equivalent of 4,000 salaried positions in the first quarter of 2006 – or 10 percent of salary-related costs – and a reduction in t he company’s officer ranks by 12 percent by the end of the first quarter.

Ford has briefed the leadership of the UAW and CAW about these plans.


Financial Impact

2006 will be a year of transition as Ford moves from its old North American business model to a new customer-focused strategy that is designed to restore automotive operations in the region to profitability no later than 2008. The estimated pre-tax financial impact of the North American plan in 2006 includes:


$250 million for hourly personnel separations – excluding ACH actions.

$220 million for fixed asset write-offs.

“Our cost structure will improve as we progress through 2006 and increasingly thereafter, and we’ll return to profitability in our North American automotive business no later than 2008,” said Don Leclair, executive vice president and chief financial officer. “We’re confident in our plan and optimistic we can achieve our goals.”


Ford begins a new era in its North American automotive business with a realistic view of the challenges facing the company but also building on several important competitive strengths, including:


A corporate commitment to design, safety and technology innovation.

Leadership in the full-size pickup trucks, where the Ford F-Series has been No. 1 for 29 years.

A resurgent car business, paced by the Ford Mustang and Fusion, the Mercury Milan and the Lincoln Zephyr.

A strong and growing presence in crossover utility vehicles, today’s fastest-growing segment.

Ford Credit, which continues to be closely linked to Ford’s automotive business, delivering solid profitability.

More than 4,300 Ford and Lincoln Mercury dealerships.

“Ford’s strengths were built over 100 years, and we are taking the tough but necessary steps to address our issues with candor, speed and compassion for the people affected by our work force reductions,” said Bill Ford. “This next chapter in Ford’s history will be remembered for our renewed commitment to innovation and as the time we moved boldly to prepare Ford’s North American business to face global competition.”

###


Jan. 23, 2006



Safe Harbor/Risk Factors

Statements included or incorporated by reference herein may constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are based on expectations, forecasts and assumptions by our management and involve a number of risks, uncertainties, and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those stated, including, without limitation:


Greater price competition resulting from industry overcapacity, currency fluctuations or other factors;
A significant decline in industry sales, particularly in the United States or Europe, resulting from slowing economic growth, geo-political events or other factors;
Lower-than-anticipated market acceptance of new or existing products;
A market shift (or an increase in or acceleration of market shift) away from sales of trucks or sport utility vehicles, or from sales of other more profitable vehicles in the United States;
Higher prices for or reduced availability of fuel;
Currency or commodity price fluctuations;
Economic distress of suppliers that may require us to provide financial support or take other measures to ensure supplies of materials;
Work stoppages at Ford or supplier facilities or other interruptions of supplies;
Labor or other constraints on our ability to restructure our business;
The discovery of defects in vehicles resulting in delays in new model launches, recall campaigns or increased warranty costs;
Increased safety, emissions, fuel economy or other regulation resulting in higher costs and/or sales restrictions;
Unusual or significant litigation or governmental investigations arising out of alleged defects in our products or otherwise;
A change in our requirements for parts or materials where we have entered into long-term supply arrangements that commit us to purchase minimum or fixed quantities of certain parts or materials, or to pay a minimum amount to the seller (“take-or-pay contracts”);
Worse-than-assumed economic and demographic experience for our postretirement benefit plans (e.g., investment returns, interest rates, health care cost trends, benefit improvements);
Changes in interest rates;
Additional credit rating downgrades;
Inability to access debt or securitization markets around the world at competitive rates or in sufficient amounts;
Higher-than-expected credit losses;
Lower-than-anticipated residual values and/or higher-than-expected return rates for leased vehicles; and
Inability to implement the Way Forward Plan.

We cannot be certain that any expectation, forecast or assumption made by management in preparing these forward-looking statements will prove accurate, or that any projection will be realized. It is to be expected that there may be differences between projected and actual results. Our forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of their initial issuance, and we do not undertake any obligation to update or revise publicly any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
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Old 01-23-2006, 10:35 AM
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Ford to Cut 25,000 to 30,000 Jobs by 2012 - - By Dee-Ann Durbin, AP Auto Writer - - SOurce: yahoo.com

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) -- Ford Motor Co., the nation's second-largest automaker, said Monday that it will cut 25,000 to 30,000 jobs and idle 14 facilities by 2012 as part of a restructuring designed to reverse a $1.6 billion loss last year in its North American operations.


The cuts represent 20 percent to 25 percent of Ford's North American work force of 122,000 people. Ford has approximately 87,000 hourly workers and 35,000 salaried workers in the region.

Ford shares rose 68 cents, or 8.6 percent, to $8.58 in morning trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

Earlier Monday, Ford reported earnings of $2 billion in 2005, down 42 percent from last year's profit of $3.5 billion. It was the third straight year the automaker has reported a profit, but gains in Europe, Asia and elsewhere were offset by a loss of $1.6 billion in North American operations.

Plants to be idled through 2008 include the St. Louis, Atlanta and Michigan's Wixom assembly plants and Batavia Transmission in Ohio. Windsor Casting in Ontario also will be idled, as was previously announced following contract negotiations with the Canadian Auto Workers. Another two assembly plants to be idled will be determined later this year, the company said.

The other seven facilities that will be idled were not immediately identified.

A total of 14 facilities, including seven assembly plants, will cease production by 2012, Ford said.

"We will be making painful sacrifices to protect Ford's heritage and secure our future," Chairman and Chief Executive Bill Ford said in a statement. "Going forward, we will be able to deliver more innovative products, better returns for our shareholders and stability in the communities where we operate."

The No. 2 U.S. automaker after General Motors Corp. has been hurt by falling sales of its profitable sport utility vehicles, growing health care and materials costs and labor contracts that have limited its ability to close plants and cut jobs. The United Auto Workers union will have to agree to some of the changes Ford wants to make.

Ford also has seen its U.S. market share slide as a result of increasing competition from foreign rivals. The company suffered its tenth straight year of market share losses in the United States in 2005, and for the first time in 19 years, Ford lost its crown as America's best-selling brand to GM's Chevrolet. Ford sold around 2.9 million vehicles for a market share of 17.4 percent in 2005, down from 18.3 percent the year before and 24 percent in 1990.

Ford said Monday it would no longer provide earnings guidance beginning in 2006.

"We must be guided by our long-term goals of building our brands, satisfying customers, developing strong products, accelerating innovation, and, most importantly, producing a sustainable profit from our automotive business," the CEO said.

The restructuring is Ford's second in four years. Under the first plan, Ford closed five plants and cut 35,000 jobs, but its North American operations failed to turn around.

Alan Hallman, mayor of Hapeville, Ga., where the Atlanta Assembly Plant is located, called the latest news "a setback for the state."

The plant, which makes the Taurus, has about 2,000 employees. Hallman said it accounts for 9 percent of the small city's budget.

"We've got hundreds of man-hours and thousands of dollars invested on various plans to keep them here. The fact that they've elected to idle the plant is very disappointing," he said.

Ford used just 79 percent of its North American plant capacity in 2005, down from 86 percent in 2004, according to preliminary numbers released last week by Harbour Consulting Inc., a firm that measures plant productivity. By contrast, rival Toyota Motor Corp. was operating at full capacity.

Ford said in its earnings announcement Monday that it reduced employment in 2005 by 10,000 people due to layoffs, buyouts and attrition. Ford has around 300,000 employees worldwide.
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Old 01-23-2006, 10:39 AM
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All these plant closings and layoffs are hurting the economny here in Ontario. Maybe I should sell my Acura and buy a Ford
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Old 01-23-2006, 10:57 AM
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Ford and its potential sale of PAG **Aston Martin Sold (page 5)**

Ford rejects Renault bid for Jaguar, report says - - Reuters - - Source; Automotive News / January 23, 2006

LONDON -- Ford Motor Co. has rejected an approach from Renault SA to buy ailing luxury-car maker Jaguar, the Sunday Times newspaper said.

The paper, citing senior motor industry sources, said Renault had expressed its interest in acquiring Jaguar to Ford last year, but Ford's chiefs, led by CEO Bill Ford, were understood to have rejected the French firm's overtures.

Neither company was immediately available for comment.
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Old 01-23-2006, 10:58 AM
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Wow! Very interesting this is. This tells you that the French are in grow-mode.
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Old 01-23-2006, 11:00 AM
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This is crazy news I think.
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Old 01-23-2006, 11:02 AM
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I think it's a smart play on Ford's part. Besides Jaguar, they only have the Land Rover and Aston Martin marques to play in the luxury realm. They can't seem to get Lincoln up there with the luxury heavyweights, so Jaguar must stay and they must breathe life into the brand. Volvo is somewhat of a niche player.
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Old 01-23-2006, 11:05 AM
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I really can't an Anglo carmaker with a French parent company going over too well across the pond. Carlos must smell some potential with that marque.
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Old 01-23-2006, 11:05 AM
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Product investments will result in new vehicles in new segments to reach more customers – including small cars and more crossovers – while maintaining Ford’s truck leadership.
I live this statement. I also like the fact that they seem to have set a time frame for themselves. 2008. That is good.
The mission statements for each company seem to be good. What I don't like is this switch to the Three letter thing MKX(?). It is confusing enough with the other companies. Lincoln has heritage. The should work on that.
Overall seems pretty good, though.
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Old 01-23-2006, 11:14 AM
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Originally Posted by fdl
All these plant closings and layoffs are hurting the economny here in Ontario. Maybe I should sell my Acura and buy a Ford

LOL
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Old 01-23-2006, 11:27 AM
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And in a related matter:

Renault plans global organization overhaul - - Source: Automotive News


PARIS -- French carmaker Renault SA, due to make a 3-year strategy announcement on Feb. 9, plans to restructure its organization by geographical zones to cater better to local markets, the La Tribune newspaper said on Monday.

The paper said Renault would inform its social partners about the move later on Monday. It said big regions would become separate profit centers and no longer piloted from headquarters in Paris.

Chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn has been keeping his plans to be announced on Feb. 9 under wraps, But during his time at Michelin he fought to reduce interference by its French headquarters in the running of North America, where he was local head before moving on to Renault and Nissan.
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Old 01-23-2006, 11:40 AM
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Ford plans to cut 1,700 suppliers - - David Barkholz - - SOurce: Autonews

DETROIT -- As Ford Motor Co. launches its second restructuring of North American operations in four years, the automaker intends to cut its supplier ranks from 2,500 globally to about 800.

The extent of the Ford supplier cuts was revealed publicly for the first time last week by Neil De Koker, president of the Original Equipment Suppliers Association.

De Koker, speaking at the Automotive News World Congress in Dearborn, Mich., said Ford global purchasing chief Tony Brown laid out the plan to 600 suppliers it invited to a meeting in October. De Koker said the Ford reductions would come over the next few years.

De Koker said the cuts are part of Ford's plan to get better technology and lower costs by doing business with fewer, more capable suppliers. Ford rolled out the first phase of its new supplier partnership program in September.

Previously, Ford had said it would cut about half its suppliers.

Last week, Ford spokesman Paul Wood confirmed the more aggressive goal. He said the program was aimed at improving innovation and economies of scale. "This is about developing a more sustainable business model," he said.

Ford, which buys about $70 billion in parts annually, has announced 27 preferred suppliers that will increase their future business with Ford. They include Johnson Controls Inc., Dana Corp., Lear Corp. and Visteon Corp.

General Motors also has reduced its supplier ranks, said spokesman Tom Wickham. GM cut 500 suppliers in 2005, and it now has 3,200.
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Old 01-23-2006, 11:41 AM
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The supplier cuts are very good news IMO.
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Old 01-23-2006, 11:54 AM
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Originally Posted by slyraskal
I just heard people were complaining that the GT500 didn't live up to it's badge by having less than 500 ponies. That's all.

Kinda like the old Z had 300 hp, but the new one was under 300 hp and they rebadged it using the # of litres.

I guess people like to keep somethings the way they were for nostalga's sake. And for select things I do agree.
With few exceptions, Nissan has always named its numerical cars based on liters.. never hp - the same goes for many other manuf's. So - the 300ZX was named for its liters, not hp.

btw - sad about Ford.
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Old 01-23-2006, 01:19 PM
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Originally Posted by fdl
All these plant closings and layoffs are hurting the economny here in Ontario. Maybe I should sell my Acura and buy a Ford
Competitiveness is the key to Ford's survival. Ford needs to trim the extra fat. You can trade in for a Ford now, but you may need to buy another Ford next year, and another two more the following year, and so on, in order to help out the inefficient operation.
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Old 01-23-2006, 01:28 PM
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Wixom's dead.

All of Ford will be dead too unless they can gain some traction.
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Old 01-23-2006, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by gavriil
This is crazy news I think.
Very crazy news. This is coming out of left field... who knew?? Bill's really smart to hold on to Jag. Though it's losing money, it can be turned around.
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Old 01-23-2006, 02:39 PM
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Originally Posted by F23A4
I really can't an Anglo carmaker with a French parent company going over too well across the pond. Carlos must smell some potential with that marque.
I'm getting sick of Carlos. Nissan can do better without him.
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Old 01-23-2006, 02:57 PM
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Originally Posted by F23A4
I really can't see an Anglo carmaker with a French parent company going over too well across the pond. Carlos must smell some potential with that marque.
EDIT
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Old 01-23-2006, 02:57 PM
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Originally Posted by M TYPE X
I'm getting sick of Carlos. Nissan can do better without him.
Yeah, Nissan is really struggling under his leadership.
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