A new chapter in the history of Skoda will begin starting in July this year when the Czech automaker will have a new CEO. On July 1, Klaus Zellmer will replace Thomas Schafer at the helm of the brand. Zellmer will be appointed as a new member of Skoda’s Board of Management to be subsequently elected by the Board of Management as their new Chairman, as required by Czech law.
Zellmer started his career in the automotive industry in 1997 as an assistant at Porsche. Just two years later, he moved to France to work in the sales department of the Stuttgart-based company. After a number of different positions within the sports car brand, he became head of marketing in Germany and was promoted to the position of Chairman of the Board of Management in 2010. He’s been a member of Volkswagen’s Board of Management responsible for sales, marketing, and after-sales since September 2020.
Skoda’s current CEO, Thomas Schafer, will be promoted to the role of Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen. He’s also been in charge of the Volkswagen brand’s operating business since 1 April this year. In parallel, he will also become Brand Chairman at Volkswagen Group and will head up the ‘Volume’ brand group.
“Thomas Schafer has guided the company safely through two extremely challenging years and at the same time formulated a clear plan for the future with the Next Level - Skoda Strategy 2030,” Murat Aksel, Chairman of Skoda, comments. “Today, Skoda is more electric, digital, and international than ever. Thomas Schäfer has laid the foundations for a promising future for the Skoda brand by successfully launching the electric Enyaq iV and other planned e-models.”
Gallery: 2022 Skoda Enyaq Coupe iV
Volkswagen Group’s CEO Herbert Diess recently admitted Skoda’s “capacities in manufacturing and R&D are fully booked" and there are no plans of bringing the Czech brand to the United States. The company will remain focused on the European market and will also lead VAG’s operations in India, Russia, and other countries. Meanwhile, a brand new concept vehicle is expected to be introduced soon, previewing Skoda’s future design language.