Sergio Marchionne, one of the most interesting and pragmatic automotive executives in the world, became the new CEO of Ferrari today. What does it mean for the storied brand? Change is coming.
The CEOs of big corporations are usually well-polished PR machines who never deviate from the script. In many ways, they’re really kind of boring. Then there are CEOs of big corporations who are fantastically frank and make the job of a journalist much more fun because they cut through the bullshit and tell you what they’re actually thinking.
Sergio Marchionne, who is also the CEO of Fiat Chrysler (and mastermind of the deal that brought those two companies together), is the latter. He’s not afraid to tell you what he thinks, and when he has an idea, he’s happy to shout it from the rooftops. Last year, Marchionne sent an unsolicited to GM CEO Mary Barra. It laid out his vision for a megamerger of the two automotive giants, laying out how the companies could save billions by joining forces.
For Ferrari, Marchionne plans to use the brand — the world-famous prancing horse and the Ferrari name — on other luxury goods besides sports cars to generate more revenue. Ferrari world amusement parks, clothing, luggage, watches, and more could all be in the cards.