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Renault bolsters executive ranks

Getting busy: Renault is ramping up its staff levels in Australia to handle renewed business with models such as the Renault Sport Clio 200.

New appointments reinforce Renault executive ranks

16 Mar 2010

RENAULT has announced senior management appointments at its restructured Australian operations as its ramps up for an increase in new-model activity in 2010.

After making an unspecified number of staff cutbacks last year, which Renault Australia managing director Rudi Koenig blamed on the economic downturn, the factory-run Victorian-based operation has now bolstered its executive ranks.

The French manufacturer’s area operations manager for the South East Asia region, Sylvain Martin-Villa, has relocated from Singapore to Melbourne as area operations manager and head of marketing for Australia.

Prior to his stint in Singapore, Mr Martin-Villa was marketing and advertising manager for Renault in Japan.

 center image Left: Renault Australia sales and network director Shane Dunemann. Below: Renault Australia media representative Richard Wilson

Meanwhile, national training manager at alliance partner Nissan Australia, Shane Dunemann, has been promoted to director of sales and network.

Mr Dunemann, who has also served as southern region manager for Nissan Australia, has 25 years’ experience in the automotive industry.

Renault Australia also recently appointed Richard Wilson as its media representative, taking PR duties from Mr Koenig who has held them since former marketing communications manager Craig Smith was made redundant in June last year.

Mr Wilson is a former operations director of Renault Australia and was part of the senior management team when the French brand returned to Australia in 2001 armed with a $60 million establishment budget.

Back then, Renault said it expected to be as selling 25,000 cars by 2007 – a figure it has never come close to. Last year, Renault sold 2400 new vehicles.

Mr Koenig, who is a long-time Nissan/Renault finance executive, took over from Mr Wilson in 2005 and set about working on incremental growth for the brand.

New models due in 2010 include the Renault Sport Clio 200, new-generation Megane hatchback and coupe-cabriolet, and new light commercial vehicles.

“It’s going to be a busy time and we need to be sure that we take maximum advantage of what will be a very attractive line-up,” said Mr Koenig. “That means ensuring that we have the resources to build sufficient sales momentum this year to carry us into the years following.

“If we are going to improve our sales performance, we must also be in good shape to support our dealer sales force.”

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