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Mike Kimberley stepping down.

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Mike Kimberley stepping down.

Post  A7ESK on Wed Jul 15, 2009 11:14 pm

Mike Kimberley

The Chief Executive of Group Lotus, Mike Kimberley, announced today that he is stepping down from his role due to an ongoing back problem. An Executive Committee comprising current Group Lotus board members supported by the shareholder, Proton Holdings Bhd, will assume day-to-day control of the business until a successor is appointed.

Mike, who will be 71 in August, has been suffering from severe back pain for a number of months and underwent surgery in late 2008 which was only partially successful. His doctors have now advised him to retire so as not to jeopardize his long term health. Under these circumstances, the board has regretfully accepted his resignation.

Dato’ Syed Zainal, Managing Director of Proton Holdings Bhd, said: “It is a great shame that Mike’s health has forced his departure earlier than any of us would have liked. He has been a great asset to Lotus over four decades. Since his return in 2006, we have seen a huge turnaround in the fortunes of this great company. He leaves Lotus with our deep gratitude and our very best wishes for his retirement.”

Under Mike’s leadership, Lotus has produced the award-winning Lotus Evora, which was recently launched to the world’s press with universal acclaim. He has also overseen the expansion of Lotus Engineering, one of the world’s most respected high-technology engineering consultancy businesses. Group Lotus now has a positive and stable platform despite the global economic downturn and is delivering against its defined growth targets in the company’s strategic business plan.

Mike Kimberley said: “Sadly, it is on doctor’s orders that I am stepping down but I will leave confident that Lotus is in great shape with a strong management team fully supported by our shareholder in Malaysia. It’ll be very hard to leave knowing that there are such exciting times ahead but I’ll take with me many very happy memories. I want to extend my thanks to the company’s shareholder for their unfailing support, my management team and the wonderful staff both at Hethel and at our various operational locations throughout the world. Most of all I want to thank our Lotus customers and loyal fans worldwide for their support over the years.”

Mike will leave Lotus on 17 July 2009.


Mike Kimberley – a Very Brief Resume

Michael J. Kimberley (“Mike”) C.Eng., F.I. Mech. E., F.R.S.A., F.I.E.D, F.I.M.I has had a remarkable career in the motor industry over the last 56 years, working with some of the great engineers, innovators and leaders of the worlds motor companies.

Mike started as an apprentice with Jaguar in 1953 before rapidly progressing to becoming in Section Leader, Special Projects at Jaguar in 1965 where he lead the team developing the Jaguar XJ13 Le Mans car, under such famous names as Jaguar founder Sir William Lyons and Jaguar race director Frank (Lofty) England.

In 1969, he joined Lotus as Manager of Continuous Engineering, with the Lotus Europa Twin Cam being one of his most notable projects. Mike rose steadily but rapidly through the Lotus ranks, joining the Board of Lotus aged 37, and becoming Managing Director of Lotus Cars in 1976 and Managing Director of Lotus Engineering by 1980, being responsible for such Lotus icons as the Esprit, Eclat and Elite.

During the 1970s and 80s, Mike had the unique experience of having worked closely with the company’s founder Colin Chapman, with whom Mike set up the world class Lotus Engineering consultancy to enable Lotus to work for many other cars companies around the world. Lotus Engineering is now a globally recognised high technology engineering consultancy and serves many of the world’s car companies.

After Colin Chapman’s tragic and untimely death in 1982, Mike became C.E.O of Group Lotus plc, as well as holding board positions with a number of Lotus associated companies such as Chairman of Millbrook Proving Ground and President of Moog Systems Inc. With Lotus under General Motors ownership, Mike became Chairman of Group Lotus plc before leaving Lotus in 1992 to become Executive Vice President (General Motors Overseas Corporation) based in South East Asia. Two years later, Mike became director of the Vector Aeromotive Corporation, and in 1994, he became President & Managing Director of Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A, being responsible for the rebuilding of Lamborghini after Chrysler’s ownership and prior to its sale to Audi AG, as part of the VW Group.
In the mid 1990s, Mike left Lamborghini and worked directly for Tommy Suharto as a board member of Timor Putra Nasional (owners of Lamborghini) until retiring with an undiagnosed tropical fever.

Returning to the automotive industry a few months later, Mike worked in a consultancy role for a number of organisations including Tata Motors Ltd.

In August 2005 Mike was appointed to the Lotus Group International Limited and Group Lotus plc Boards as well as other Boards of Proton. He was appointed acting Chief Executive Officer of Group Lotus plc in May 2006, confirmed as Chief Executive Officer of Group Lotus plc in September 2006.
During his second tenure at Lotus, Mike has been responsible for the creation and execution of a new 5 year strategic business plan, and the new, already award-winning Lotus Evora is the first of the range of new Lotus cars to be designed, developed, manufactured and sold by Britain’s most iconic and innovative sportscar company. Lotus Engineering has expanded to become a world-class consultancy employing over 500 highly qualified engineers in five technical centres around the globe. It is revered for innovation, outstanding driving dynamics, exciting niche vehicles and efficient performance engineering.

Mike (70) is married with 3 children and 6 grand children and lives in Norwich.

About Lotus
The main operating subsidiary of Group Lotus plc is Lotus Cars Limited, which has two operating divisions - Lotus Engineering and Lotus Cars. Lotus Engineering is an internationally recognised automotive engineering consultancy based in Norfolk, UK. Global facilities include those in Michigan (USA), Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia), China and offices in Germany.

Lotus Engineering provides comprehensive and versatile consultancy services to many of the world's OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers, offering a full engineering service from initial concept and project design through development and integration of the complete vehicle to meet all worldwide markets and customers to full production. This includes third party 'niche vehicle' engineering and manufacture worldwide.

Lotus Cars builds world class, prestige, high performance sports cars for sale in 37 countries. These include the iconic Lotus Elise, and the Exige and Europa. Lotus’ latest model, the Lotus Evora, goes on sale from Spring 2009. Lotus is a global high-tech company, expanding rapidly and committed to driving forward technology for both Lotus Cars and its Engineering clients, spearheading research into such areas as hybrids, electric vehicles and renewable fuels.

For more information about Lotus please contact:
PR Department; Group Lotus plc,
Potash Lane, Hethel, Norfolk, UK, NR14 8EZ
Tel: +44(0)1953 608264;
Email: pr@lotuscars.co.uk
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Re: Mike Kimberley stepping down.

Post  TimS on Thu Jul 16, 2009 4:04 pm

What a shame, Mike Kimberley is a really great guy who has helped steer the ship with tremendous ability to get things done and keep Lotus where it should be, he will be really missed, lets hope they get a good replacement....maybe a job for Mike Stripe.. Question or what about you John P (GB) or have you already sent in your CV Question Smile
Cheers, Tim.
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Re: Mike Kimberley stepping down.

Post  GrumpyBodger on Fri Jul 17, 2009 2:56 pm

Yes what a shame indeed.
I hope he will be able to find time to write "his" story about Lotus & ACBC.

I don't think I'll bother about applying for the job though; I'm far too busy for that, a broken Fridge needs replacing now or I won't have any cold beer for the Weekend.
It's all a matter of priorities Cool

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New Boss for Lotus

Post  Atthelimit on Thu Sep 03, 2009 2:59 pm

New boss for Lotus?

Since Mike Kimberley stepped down as CEO of Group Lotus on July 17th, a committee of Lotus and Proton executives have managed the company.
Now Autosport.com is reporting the new CEO of Lotus will be Dany Bahar, the man formerly in charge of Ferrari’s Global Brand Department.
Born in Istanbul, Turkey in 1971, Bahar grew up in Switzerland after his family left Turkey while he was still very young. Following a brief period working in sports marketing in Rome, Bahar next worked in finance circles in Liechtenstein where he met Red Bull boss Dietrich Mateschitz. Bahar became a leading figure of the beverage company and was known as Mateschitz’s ‘right hand man’.
At Red Bull, Bahar transformed the company’s role from just sponsoring sports teams to owning those sports teams outright. This empowered Red Bull with long-term investment decisions of other brands.
Bahar established the Red Bull Racing F1 team after he took over the remains of Jaguar Racing from Ford in 2004. This was not the start of Red Bull’s involvement in motorsport however, which had previously included a long-term partnership with the Sauber F1 team.
Bahar then added a second F1 team, Scuderia Toro Rosso, from the remains of Minardi. Toyota’s entry into NASCAR under Red Bull was also organized by Bahar.
Bahar moved from Red Bull to Ferrari in 2007

This statement was lifted from the Autosport website so it should be correct. Lets hope he can persuade Lotus back into competition.
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Re: Mike Kimberley stepping down.

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