Bentley CEO Adrian Hallmark Departs for Aston Martin

We’re catching news this morning that Bentley’s Chairman and CEO is leaving the brand. And while the British brand managed by Audi did have significant sales drop in 2023, it appears the decision to do so is of his own accord. On the same day, Aston Martin is confirming Hallmark’s arrival as their new leader.

Check out both the Bentley and the Aston Martin press releases below.

Adrian Hallmark is leaving Bentley

[source: Bentley Motors]

  • Adrian Hallmark, chairman and CEO of Bentley Motors Ltd. since February 2018, is leaving the company at his own request and by mutual consent.
  • Gernot Döllner, Audi CEO and responsible for the Progressive Brand Group: “Bentley owes much to Adrian Hallmark. Under his leadership the company has taken important steps towards an electric future as a luxury car manufacturer.” 

(Crewe, 22 March 2024) Adrian Hallmark is leaving Bentley Motors at his own request and by mutual consent. He is preparing for new tasks outside the Volkswagen Group with immediate effect.

In February 2018 Adrian Hallmark took on the role of chairman and CEO of Bentley Motors in a challenging business situation. During his time as CEO, leading new luxury models were launched and the strategic aim was formed of making Bentley the most sustainable brand of luxury vehicles by 2030. Before taking over the position of CEO, between 1999 and 2005 Hallmark was board member for sales and marketing at Bentley. For 25 years he has worked at board level for international automotive companies in the United Kingdom, the USA and Asia.

Gernot Döllner, chairman of the executive board of Audi and responsible for the Progressive Brand Group, which includes Lamborghini, Bentley and Ducati, within the Volkswagen Group states that “Adrian Hallmark has achieved a great deal at Bentley. In his six years as chairman and CEO, he has made his mark on Bentley Motors, and along with his team in Crewe has successfully pushed ahead the development of the company. On the path to carbon-neutral electric vehicles in the luxury segment, he has taken important steps towards the long-term success of the company. I would like to thank Adrian Hallmark for his significant commitment over the last years and wish him well in his personal and professional future.“

Adrian Hallmark, chairman and CEO of Bentley Motors Ltd., says that “Bentley has had a great influence on me. To redefine luxury mobility for the future with such a strong brand is a task that I took on with full commitment and great pleasure. The time has now come for me to turn to new challenges. I would like to express warm thanks to the entire Bentley team for all that we have achieved together in the last few years.“

His successor in the role at Bentley Motors Ltd. will be announced in due course. The British company Bentley, based in Crewe in the United Kingdom, has been part of Volkswagen AG since 1998 and of the Audi Group since January 2022.

Appointment of new Chief Executive Officer

  • Adrian Hallmark, experienced ultra-luxury automotive leader, appointed new Chief Executive Officer
  • Former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Bentley Motors to succeed Amedeo Felisa, who is to stand down as Chief Executive Officer of Aston Martin
  • Hallmark to commence position no later than 1st October 2024

Gaydon, UK: The Board of Aston Martin today announces the appointment of ultra-luxury automotive leader Adrian Hallmark, who will join Aston Martin as an Executive Director of the Company and its Chief Executive Officer no later than 1 October 2024.

Hallmark, aged 61, will join Aston Martin from his recent position as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Bentley Motors, a role he has fulfilled since 2018. He brings more than 25 years of highly successful senior automotive experience from the US, Europe, and Asia with companies such as Bentley, Porsche and Volkswagen.

Ensuring a smooth transition in leadership, Amedeo Felisa will remain as Chief Executive Officer until Hallmark takes up post. Felisa will continue to oversee the introduction of Aston Martin’s exciting new products, including the launch of its third next generation sports car later this year, completing its class-leading, new front-engine portfolio following the successful launches of DB12 and Vantage.

Commenting on the new appointment, Lawrence Stroll, Executive Chairman of Aston Martin, said: 

“When Amedeo was appointed CEO, I spoke of him leading a new phase of growth and development. Two years on, we have delivered on that promise, as we near completion of our thrilling new product portfolio and move closer to our vision of becoming the world’s most desirable, ultra-luxury British performance brand.

“I’d like to personally pay tribute to Amedeo, recognising not just what he has achieved at Aston Martin but throughout his long and distinguished career at the very top of the ultra-luxury automotive industry. I am pleased that Amedeo will remain in post until Adrian joins and will continue to oversee the launch of our upcoming products, with our breathtaking line-up of new front engine sports cars a fitting legacy to his time leading the Company and its product strategy. We look forward to celebrating Amedeo’s contribution to Aston Martin’s recent success before wishing him the very best.

“In Adrian Hallmark, we are attracting one of the highest calibre leaders not just in our segment, but in the entire global automotive industry. Complementing our world-class leadership, Adrian will bring to Aston Martin unrivalled experience in both the ultra-luxury and British manufacturing sectors to progress our strategy and continue recent momentum.”

Amedeo Felisa, Chief Executive Officer of Aston Martin, said: 

“It has been a great privilege to serve as Aston Martin’s Chief Executive Officer, leading our iconic brand through this exciting era. I am incredibly proud of the progress made over the last two years, which has aligned Aston Martin for a positive future direction. I believe now is the right time to allow the Company to transition to new leadership.

“I’d like to thank Lawrence and the Board for their strong support throughout my time as CEO, and colleagues who’ve worked incredibly hard in recent years to deliver on our vision for Aston Martin and execute on our award-winning new product strategy. I am looking forward to delivering our upcoming new products before handing over to Adrian, who is a fantastic appointment for Aston Martin with a wealth of first-class experience.”

Adrian Hallmark added:

“Like many working within the ultra-luxury segment, I have admired the continued transformation of Aston Martin’s brand and products from afar and feel honoured to have the opportunity to work with Lawrence, the Board and the Company’s employees to lead its next chapter.

“The transformation of Aston Martin is one of the most exciting projects within the ultra-luxury automotive industry. I am looking forward to continuing the Company’s great momentum and utilising my experience and passion to further unleash this iconic brand’s potential and take it to even greater success.”

Regulatory Disclosures
A separate announcement containing the required regulatory information in accordance with paragraph 9.6.13R of the Listing Rules of the Financial Conduct Authority will be released within 5 business days.

Remuneration Arrangements
Adrian Hallmark’s service agreement, remuneration and benefits will be consistent with Aston Martin’s Remuneration Policy as approved by shareholders at the AGM in May 2022.

The Company will disclose details of exit arrangements for Amedeo Felisa on its website in due course, in accordance with its statutory obligations.

Inside Information
This announcement contains inside information within the meaning of Article 7(1) of the EU Market Abuse Regulation No. 596/2016 as it forms part of UK law by virtue of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018. The person responsible for releasing this announcement on behalf of the Company is Liz Miles, Company Secretary.

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