Ferrari has appointed electronics pioneer Benedetto Vigna as its new CEO as the company prepares for the age of electric cars.
The luxury sports car maker known for its high-performance engines chose the Vigna to lead it through the new era of silent and electric powertrains.
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Vigna joins Ferrari on September 1 from semiconductor company STMicroelectronics, where he is currently head of its sensor group.
The Italian sports car maker has announced its date for… statement today is Wednesday. It comes after former CEO Louis Camilleri stepped down for personal reasons in December.
Ferrari said the 52-year-old Italian has experience working with some of the world’s leading technology companies.
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His appointment came as a surprise to many, given that he had not previously worked for a car company or a luxury brand.
In addition, the appointment reflects the need to reinvent Ferrari and the difficulty of securing candidates ready to take on the task.
With cars starting at €200,000 ($244,000), Ferrari is often seen as more of a luxury company than a car specialist.
As part of the sustainability drive, automakers around the world are moving away from internal combustion engines. It is moving towards electric cars that usually run on lithium-ion batteries.
European automakers are now catching up with Tesla, which has become a household name in the electric car market.
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Ferrari and Electricity:
The unit Vigna heads currently enjoys similar revenue to Ferrari as a whole and was the company’s most profitable operating division last year.
Vigna graduated from the University of Pisa with a degree in Physics. He started his career at STMicroelectronics in 1995 and helped the company become one of the leading manufacturers of motion sensors.
Vigna was part of the team that invented the three-axis gyroscopes in 2010, which change the screen ratio of the phone as it is rotated.
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The company, which offers hybrid models, has promised to deliver the first electric car by 2025. The appointment of the Vigna should reduce market concerns about Ferrari’s future and its path towards electric vehicles.
“Vigna’s deep understanding of the technologies driving so much change in our industry, combined with his innovation and leadership skills, advance Ferrari and its unique story of passion and performance for the exciting era to come,” said John Elkann, Ferrari Chairman.
In addition, the company said: “The unique knowledge gained over 26 years working at the heart of the semiconductor industry that is rapidly transforming the automotive sector accelerates Ferrari’s ability to pioneer the application of next-generation technologies.”
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