(Adds different starting date for de Nysschen at GM)
TOKYO/DETROIT, July 11 General Motors Co
said on Friday it has hired Johan de Nysschen, chief of Nissan
Motor Co's Infiniti premium brand, to run its Cadillac
He joins the U.S. automaker on Aug. 1 as president of the
luxury brand and executive vice president at GM, after two years
at the Japanese carmaker. The automaker said earlier on Friday
that his first day would be Sept. 1.
De Nysschen, 54, will report to GM President Dan Ammann, who
cited the executive's experience with Volkswagen's
Audi luxury brand. "Johan brings to our company vast experience
in the development and proper execution of luxury automotive
brands," Ammann said in a statement.
De Nysschen said the Cadillac brand has strong recognition
and has made progress on improving its product portfolio.
De Nysschen, a South African, has submitted his resignation
and will be leaving Nissan this month to go to the United
States, Infiniti spokeswoman Karin Zhang said.
Andy Palmer, Nissan's chief planning officer and Infiniti's
chairman, will be taking over as president of the premium brand
until Nissan finds a successor to de Nysschen, Zhang said.
Automotive News, citing sources, earlier on Friday said GM,
the No. 1 U.S. automaker, planned to hire de Nysschen.
De Nysschen, who worked at Audi for 19 years before joining
Infiniti in 2012, was leading the brand's efforts to revamp its
design to boost sales as it struggled to establish its position
in the world's competitive premium market.
He aimed to boost Infiniti sales to half a million cars a
year in the next four to five years, nearly triple the 180,000
vehicles it sold in the year ended in March 2014.
(Reporting by Yoko Kubota in Tokyo and Ben Klayman in Detroit;
Editing by Christopher Cushing and Steve Orlofsky)