Johan de Nysschen has been one of the premier change agents in the global automotive industry over the last decade, and he landed at Cadillac in August, 2014, determined to bring his unmatched record, skill set and determination to a completion of the renaissance of one of the world’s iconic luxury brands.
A leading luxury automotive brand since 1902, Cadillac is in the midst of global expansion and elevation today. Cadillac’s early history was redefined by series of achievements and firsts in technology and design, propelling it worldwide fame as a premium brand.
In recent years Cadillac has refined itself, driven by new products with exhilarating performance and expressive design.
Cadillac is embarking on a new wave of expansion currently, in order to regain its position as an iconic luxury brand.
In pursuit of further growth globally, Cadillac plans eight new models through the end of the decade. These will include expansions to the elite high performance V-Series cars, a new top-of-the-range car called CT6 and several new models taking the brand into new segments. Cadillac established its own new business unit within General Motors in 2015, led by President Johan de Nysschen. The brand expressed its renewed core values in a new ethos, called Dare Greatly, that communicates the brand’s mission in new ways to consumers.
Cadillac is growing globally, driven by rapid expansion in China where sales increased 47% in 2014. Cadillac offers its products in 44 countries worldwide today, with further expansion expected going forward.
Rich Brekus grew up with grease under his fingernails, hanging around the drag-racing circuit. It was the beginning of an automotive lifetime that he believed had culminated leadership roles at BMW of North America. But Cadillac was able to lure Brekus back to the game in the summer of 2015, appealing to his love of a challenge and his affinity for cars as the brand enlisted him to mastermind a comprehensive overhaul of a product lineup.
David Colasinski was “New Cadillac” before “New Cadillac” settled into their new global headquarters in New York. He accepted an invitation to come to the brand’s front lines in early 2013, as chief financial officer for global operations -- two full years before most of the brand’s new leadership team was in place.
Dan Creed grew up in the car business and has enjoyed career experiences with a variety of automotive brands. So when Creed had the opportunity to move from a 20 year career with BMW to Cadillac in early 2016, to become vice president of sales operations, he jumped at the chance to help refresh one of the best known and most beloved car marques in America – one that especially needed someone with his background, expertise and even affection for the luxury automotive-retailing process.
For Uwe Ellinghaus, “Dare Greatly” is a compelling mantra not only for the Cadillac brand he directs but also, in some ways, for his own life.
He has spent most of his career selling automobiles. He left the industry to market luxury pens and watches for a while – then came back to the auto industry in 2014 as Cadillac’s chief marketing officer.
As the first head of Cadillac human resources in the brand’s new global headquarters in New York City, Tonya White Hallett both inherited and created a whirlwind. And though the dust is still settling from the mammoth exercise of hiring the team that will take Cadillac into a very different future, Hallett already likes what she’s done – and what she sees.
Melody Lee is nearly unique among her cohorts at Cadillac: She began as an outsider, but she also was part of the “new” Cadillac before the new Cadillac was born. So, perhaps more than anybody else on the team, the director of brand marketing appreciates how far the brand has come already.
Andrew Lipman has always been drawn to luxury brands in general and to automotive marques in particular, so it only made sense to him to accept the challenge of telling the story of the most iconic premium automotive brand in America as Cadillac’s global communications director.
Quite often, information technology comes to mind as “laptops and end-user support.” At Cadillac, while the basics of bits and bytes are certainly important, the bigger focus of its CIO and her team is supporting the brand’s aggressive transformation. This requires a laser focus on producing innovation that gives Cadillac an edge with the technology savvy Millennial and Generation X consumers.
Chas Murphy leverages aspects of his vast and eclectic life and work experience to help the Cadillac essentially figure out what to do next and how to accurately measure whether it’s reaching its goals. At Cadillac, Murphy’s charge is to run advanced analytics, market and product research, and volume planning and forecasting.
Andreas Schaaf had just settled into his role as vice president of Cadillac Europe when he was appointed to the new position of Vice President of Cadillac China in the summer of 2016. The fresh post offers a combination of three things that motivate him immensely: another international move; the challenge of competing against the best auto brands in the world; and an opportunity to build the Cadillac brand in a new way.
Andrew Smith’s 20-year international career with General Motors has involved the leadership of interior, exterior and advanced design programs, global architecture development and concept car creation on three continents.
Felix Weller is a fast-moving individual inside a fast-moving brand renaissance at Cadillac: After joining as managing director of the Middle East region in mid-2014, Weller became vice president of Europe for Cadillac in mid-2016.