Ford Motors will replace CEO Mark Fields with the head of its subsidiary responsible for developing self-driving cars, reports the New York Times.
Ford is expected to announce the appointment of Jim Hackett, the chairman of Ford Smart Mobility, as its new CEO on Monday. Founded last year, Ford Smart Mobility develops technology for connected and autonomous vehicles.
During Ford’s annual shareholder meeting earlier this month, Fields was blamed for the 40 percent drop in Ford’s stock price since he became CEO. Despite its investments in self-driving cars, which also include $1 billion poured into a joint venture with Argo AI, Ford has struggled to balance the cost of creating new technology with declining auto sales.
Ford not only has to compete with tech companies like Google, Waymo, and Tesla (whose market cap surpassed Ford’s for the first time last month), but fellow automaker General Motors, which may deploy what would be the largest fleet of self-driving cars in the world, according to documents uncovered by IEEE Spectrum.
We’ve contacted Ford for comment.