-Thomas Ulbrich will become a member of the management board responsible for the newly created department
New Mobility, which will combine electric cars and software
– Kai Grünitz will replace Ulbrich as board member responsible for technical development
– Patrik Andreas Mayer will become the financial director of the Volkswagen Cars brand
– Alexander Seitz will manage the activities of the Volkswagen Group in South America – the changes will enter into force on October 1, 2022
Volkswagen has made changes to key positions on the brand board that will accelerate the company’s transformation towards the digital age and autonomous mobility. Thomas Ulbrich became a member of the management board responsible for the newly created New Mobility department, which combines electric cars and competences related to the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand software. Kai Grünitz, previously head of development for the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brand, will replace Ulbrich as the member of the management board responsible for technical development. Other changes relate to finance – Patrik Andreas Mayer, currently CFO of the Volkswagen Group in Russia, will be responsible for the finances of the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand. He replaces Alexander Seitz, who has been appointed president of the Volkswagen Group South America. Thus, he will take over the duties of Pablo Di Si, who from September 1, 2022 has been the president and CEO of the Volkswagen Group of America and the CEO of the North America region. Ulbrich, Grünitz, Mayer and Seitz will take up their new positions on October 1, 2022.
The changes to the Volkswagen board of directors will lay the foundations for the continued transformation of the company into a software-oriented mobility provider. “With the newly created New Mobility department, we combine strategic areas – electric mobility and software, thus increasing the pace of innovation. The goal is to offer our customers the highest quality products and software that is very easy to use. I am delighted that Thomas Ulbrich will take on this task. As technology director and board member responsible for electromobility, he has already set the direction for our brand. He could see ID.3 and ID.4 from the sketch to the finished vehicle on the road and made electric cars great for everyday use. Now it will also play an important role in shaping the technological transformation towards the digitization of mobility at Volkswagen. I wish him much success, ”said Thomas Schäfer, CEO of Volkswagen Passenger Cars and head of the volume brands group. “I would also like to welcome Kai Grünitz, a new board member responsible for technical development, to the team. As head of development for the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brand, he made an important contribution to the successful market launch of the ID. Buzz. “
Two lines of electric cars – G4 (models built on the MEB platform) and G3 will be assigned to the New Mobility division. The G3 range includes all models that will be based on the new Group-wide scalable SSP platform. This department will be responsible for the software and will work closely with CARIAD, the Group’s automotive software unit. Thomas Ulbrich has also been elected to the CARIAD supervisory board to further strengthen cooperation. CARIAD is responsible for software development, and the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand for its integration.
The other personnel changes relate to finances. Patrik Andreas Mayer, currently CFO of the Volkswagen Group in Russia, will become CFO of the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand. He will replace Alexander Seitz, who has been appointed president of the Volkswagen Group in the South America region.
Thomas Schäfer adds: “As Chief Financial Officer, Alexander Seitz has successfully led the Volkswagen brand through the turmoil of the past two and a half years and helped put the company on a firm foundation. I would like to thank him very much for that and wish him all the best in his new role. Thanks to his many years of experience in South America, he is the perfect man for this position in an important market for us. I am also glad that we managed to acquire Patrik Mayer, an excellent manager with international experience, as the new financial director of the Volkswagen brand. Its task will be to sustainably increase profitability and further strengthen our financial solidity. I wish him success and I cordially greet him on the management board. “
Thomas Ulbrich studied at the University of Hamburg. In 1992, after earning an engineering degree, he began his career in the logistics department in Wolfsburg, where in 1995 he took up a management position. In 1996, he became the head of logistics at FAW-Volkswagen in Changchun, China. Two years later, he took over responsibility for the assembly of “segment II” at the Wolfsburg plant, and in 1999 he became head of logistics at the Emden plant. The next stage of his professional career led him to the company AUTO 5000 in Wolfsburg, where in 2001-2008 he was technical director and president of the management board. In 2008, he became a member of the management board for the production of the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brand in Hanover. Ulbrich moved to SAIC Volkswagen in China in 2010 as vice president responsible for development as well as production and logistics at a total of five locations. From 2014 to 2018, Thomas Ulbrich was responsible for production and logistics as a member of the management board of the Volkswagen brand. From 2018 to 2021, he was a member of the Volkswagen brand board responsible for electromobility. Since February 2021, he has been a member of the management board responsible for the technical development department of the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand. Kai Grünitz is an engineer by profession. He has been with Volkswagen for almost 26 years and has held various positions in the development and management department during his career. Initially, he worked in the development department at Skoda, in 2012 he joined the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brand, where he was responsible for corporate planning. Grünitz took over the management of the development of mechatronic chassis systems in 2014, followed by additional roles in the development of commercial vehicles, including chassis development in 2017 and electro-electronic development in 2018. He has been working on autonomous cars and the T7 since the beginning of 2020, and in November 2020 he became Technical Director of the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brand and is responsible for its development.Patrik Andreas Mayer began his career at the Volkswagen Group in 1997 as an intern in Wolfsburg. In 2001, he became the head of the brand’s investment control department
Volkswagen Passenger Cars. Then he held many managerial positions in the concern, incl. Head of Business Development, Chief Financial Officer at Volkswagen Navarra and Vice President for Finance and Information Technology at the Volkswagen Group in the USA. In 2014, he took over the controlling responsibility at the component production plant in Kassel, and in 2016 he was appointed CFO of the Volkswagen Group in Russia. Mayer studied at the Polytechnic University of Karlsruhe, the University of Coventry and the Polytechnic University of Paris. He also earned an MBA from Henley, UK. Alexander Seitz has many years of management experience in the automotive industry in many countries, in particular in South America. Seitz studied management and commercial law. After graduation, Seitz began his career at Daimler-Benz. Since 1995, he has held various positions in the accounting, controlling and procurement departments of Mercedes-Benz in Brazil. From 2000, he held various purchasing functions at DaimlerChrysler in Detroit. In 2005, Alexander Seitz joined Volkswagen and led the purchasing department for the entire group, incl. in the field of power units. In 2008, the manager returned to Brazil and joined Volkswagen’s leadership in that country. In 2013, Alexander Seitz was appointed vice president of SAIC Volkswagen in Shanghai, where he was responsible for finance, IT, procurement and human resources. In 2017, Alexander Seitz joined the Audi Board of Management and assumed responsibility for Finance, IT and Integrity. In 2019, he was a board member responsible for finance, operations in China and legal affairs. From March 1, 2020, Alexander Seitz sits on the Volkswagen brand board and is responsible for finances.