Volvo Marketer Plans Departure

LOS ANGELES Executive vice president of marketing Hans Krondahl is leaving Volvo to become president and CEO of an automotive parts company in Sweden, he said.

However, he plans to stay with the automaker through the decision phase of its ongoing $150 million advertising review. That process should finish up in March.

Krondahl said he would assume the leadership of Goteborg, Sweden-based Meca, which he described as a $210 million company of some 80 outlets and 900 employees.

“I have led a company before, enjoyed it, and miss it,” Krondahl said, adding that his decision reflected no dissatisfaction with Volvo. Despite the fact that Meca is technically a competitor of Volvo in the parts market, the latter has been “very supportive,” he said.

Krondahl said the review likewise has nothing to do with his decision to leave Volvo, which he joined last October, two months before the review began.

Volvo’s Goteborg leadership asked him to stay for six months, and Krondahl agreed to remain at the company’s Irvine, Calif. U.S. headquarters through April 1.

“I intend to stay until the end of the review,” Krondahl said. “Having been on both sides of the table, I know how important that is.” Krondahl was a general manager at Grey in Goteborg and ran his own shop in Sweden before joining Volvo in 2005.

The finalists in the competition for the Ford-owned brand are Omnicom’s Goodby, Silverstein & Partners in San Francisco, partnered with 180 in Amsterdam, the Netherlands; Publicis Groupe’s Fallon in Minneapolis; Havas’ Arnold in Boston, with independent Nitro in London; and the principal incumbent Havas’ Euro RSCG in New York.

New York-based consultancy Roth Associates is conducting the review.