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Suzuki bolsters senior management team

Teamwork: Suzuki Australia’s car boss Andrew Moore said the latest appointments were significant as the company prepared to launch its vital new Vitara SUV.

New managers in sales, product planning, training at Suzuki as Vitara launch looms

10 Aug 2015

SUZUKI Australia has bolstered its senior management team with three new appointments, including Joanna Montalto stepping up to the newly created role of product planning and training manager.

Geoffrey Cheng joins the company as NSW/ACT state sales manager – filling the role made vacant in June when Michael Pachota was promoted to national sales manager – and Matthew Nicol moves up to the newly created position of Victoria/Tasmania state sales manager.

Ms Montalto has worked for Suzuki Australia as a product planning and market specialist since early last year.

She previously had a stint with Toyota Australia as a product planning specialist, having joined the market-leading brand in mid-2013 after five years with automotive business intelligence firm JATO Dynamics.

Earlier in her career, Ms Montalto worked at Honda Australia for eight years as an assistant product manager.

Both Mr Cheng and Mr Nicol have more than 15 years’ automotive industry experience, with Mr Cheng working for many years as a sales manager for Honda.

Mr Nicol also previously worked for Honda in key product planning and sales roles, however for the past six years he has served as a district sales manager in Suzuki’s southern region office.

Suzuki Australia general manager of automobiles Andrew Moore said the appointments were significant as the Japanese brand managed its current period of sales growth – up 13 per cent to the end of July – and moved towards its targeted 30,000 annual sales by 2017.

“Of paramount importance as we grow the Suzuki brand in Australia is supporting our dealer network and providing outstanding customer satisfaction,” Mr Moore said.

“These appointments significantly strengthen the Suzuki team to achieve this objective and we are already seeing stronger working partnerships with our dealers and their teams.”

Mr Moore also said the appointments were important as Suzuki prepared to launch its crucial new Vitara compact SUV next month, which is expected to attract strong attention in the marketplace.

“The new Vitara is selling extremely well in Europe and we’ve had customers already placing orders for the vehicle here in Australia,” he said.

“With some pre-launch advertising, the number of customers registering interest is more than double what I expected.”

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