Kia Motors America Announces Big Shot Organizational Changes
J.H. Lee to Assume Role as President and CEO; Len Hunt Joins Kia as Chief Operating Officer
IRVINE, Calif., Oct. 7 -- Kia Motors America, Inc. (KMA) announced today that Peter M. Butterfield has left the company. J.H. Lee, currently senior executive vice president of Kia Motors Corporation, has assumed the role of President and CEO. Len Hunt, formerly executive vice president of Volkswagen America, will join the company at its U.S. headquarters in Irvine, Calif., as executive vice president and chief operating officer, effective October 10, 2005.
Under the new organizational structure, Hunt will report directly to Mr. Lee and be responsible for overseeing all KMA business operations, including sales and marketing, fixed operations and corporate planning.
Hunt comes to KMA with over 25 years of industry knowledge. Most recently, Hunt was executive vice president for Volkswagen's U.S. Operations. Preceding his time at Volkswagen, Hunt spent five years leading the sales, marketing and product planning divisions at Audi of America where he led Audi through five years of consecutive growth. Before coming to the United States, Hunt was Managing Director of Audi UK.
"Kia Motors is entering a new phase of aggressive growth in the United States, and we have realigned our management structure to better support this effort," said Lee. "With his experience and industry track record, we welcome Len to Kia and look forward to his leadership during this critical period of brand development in the U.S."
Since coming to market in the United States, Kia has expanded to a full product line of vehicles and enjoyed 11 years of consecutive sales records. Most recently, KMA posted record sales for the month of September 2005 and closed out a record third quarter with year-to-date 216,362 vehicles sold, a 6.2-percent increase over the first nine months of 2004.
"On behalf of Kia Motors, we would like to thank Peter for his service to KMA over the past four years and for his contributions toward our growth in the U.S.," said Lee. "We wish Peter continued success in all his future endeavors."
Kia Motors America is the sales, marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corp. in Seoul, South Korea. For more information, including photography, visit www.kiamedia.com.