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Last Updated: Sunday, 30 May, 2004, 20:47 GMT 21:47 UK
Ferrari boss lands top Fiat job
Luca Cordero di Montezemolo
Montezemolo's record at Ferrari has been impressive
Struggling Italian car maker Fiat has promoted the chief executive of its luxury sports car offshoot, Ferrari, to head the main company.

The Fiat board named Luca Cordero di Montezemolo as chairman, to succeed Umberto Agnelli who died last week.

Mr Montezemolo revived Ferrari's fortunes, and the board is hoping he can do the same as head of Fiat.

His appointment comes amid signs that the Agnelli family is tightening its grip on the group.

John Elkann, an heir to the Agnelli empire, has been made vice-chairman, and Umberto Agnelli's son, Andrea, has been appointed to the board.

Resignation

Mr Montezemolo, 56, was recently elected head of the powerful industrial lobby group, Confindustria. He also chairs the Italian Federation of Newspaper Publishers.

Shortly after his new appointment was announced, another top Fiat figure, chief executive Giuseppe Morchio, handed in his resignation.

He had been seen by some insiders as a possible chairman himself.

Mr Montezemolo joined Ferrari as team manager in the 1970s.

He led the sports car firm to remarkable success - both in terms of sales and in Formula One racing - while the rest of Fiat struggled.

The Fiat group has reported losses of 158m euros ($187m; 106m) for the first three months of 2004.




SEE ALSO:
Fiat boss Umberto Agnelli dies
28 May 04  |  Business
Fiat cuts first quarter losses
11 May 04  |  Business
What now for Fiat?
24 Jan 03  |  Business
Legendary Fiat head dies
24 Jan 03  |  Business


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