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Manley named FCA CEO; Marchionne steps down

by Ben Hsu

Marchionne is unable to return to work because of health complications.

Mike Manley has been named the new CEO of Fiat- Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) as Sergio Marchionne's health worsens.

Former CEO Marchionne has been recovering from shoulder surgery over the past month or so, but his condition seems have deteriorated significantly during the early hours of July 21. FCA issued a statement this morning. The company "communicates with profound sorrow that during the course of this week unexpected complications arose while Mr. Marchionne was recovering from surgery and that these have worsened significantly in recent hours."

Manley, who has served as the boss of FCA's Jeep and Ram brands, was given all powers of the CEO by the board of directors, effective immediately. From the statement, "The Board resolved to accelerate the CEO transition process that has been proceeding over the past months and named Mike Manley as CEO." Manley will be elected officially in a shareholder's meeting taking place in a few days. He is also expected to "assume responsibility of the NAFTA region."

Marchionne is "unable to return to work" but FCA did not elaborate. Having served as FCA CEO since 2004, he oversaw a controversial tenure, which he acquired Chrysler during the 2008 global financial crisis and saved it from bankruptcy. Marchionne also spun off Ferrari during his time, killed off Chrysler's passenger cars, and unsuccessfully sought a partner for FCA.

Marchionne was expected to retire at age 66 in 2019. John Elkann will become chairman at Ferrari, a post Marchionne was expected to stay in until 2021.