Porsche has been without a dedicated leader in North America since former CEO Kjell Gruner stepped down in July. Today, the company announced Timo Resch will take the reins starting in November 2023, and he’s leaving a prominent post at BMW to do it.
Resch is presently the (deep breath) vice president of customer, brand, and sales at BMW M. He also worked with BMW Motorrad, the automaker’s motorcycle group, though his career actually started with Porsche back in 1995. He spent time with Porsche North America in the late 2000s, so transitioning to the company’s top spot isn’t unfamiliar territory.
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His official title will be president and CEO of Porsche Cars North America, and he’s slated to start in November. Currently, leadership duties are shared by Executive Vice Presidents Thierry Kartochian and Joe Lawrence. Kartochian is the automaker’s chief financial officer and Lawrence serves as chief operating officer. The duo have helmed Porsche North America since Gruner’s sudden departure in early July.
The former Porsche executive didn’t give a reason for stepping down, though a quick check on LinkedIn shows he is now the chief commercial officer and president of business growth for EV automaker Rivian, starting just this month. Gruner served as CEO of Porsche North America for over two years, stepping up to the role in 2020 from his vice president position he held since 2010.
“We are delighted to welcome Timo Resch back to Porsche and to one of our most important regions,” said Detlev von Platen, member of the executive board for sales and marketing at Porsche AG, in a statement. “He is already very well acquainted with Porsche and the US market. With the expertise that he brings from his previous positions, he will further strengthen the Porsche brand presence in North America and provide important impetus for future development.”
Resch steps in during a period of record growth for Porsche. The company sold 70,065 vehicles in the US for 2022, setting an all-time record for the region. 2023 is on pace to set another record, with sales up 12 percent through the first half of the year.