PressClub South Africa · Article.
Strategic realignment of BMW Group Design
01.06.2017 Press Release
Oliver Heilmer new head of MINI Design
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Munich. In the “NEXT 100 Vision Vehicles” unveiled last year for the company’s centenary, the BMW Group design team led by Adrian van Hooydonk demonstrated its vision and enormous creative potential. The realignment of the BMW Group design team as part of corporate strategy NUMBER ONE > NEXT is the next logical step. BMW Group Design is laying the foundation for transforming visions into reality in upcoming vehicle generations and creating a digital and emotional mobility experience for customers.
Oliver Heilmer will take over as head of MINI Design effective 1 September 2017. The 42-year-old designer is currently president of Designworks, a BMW Group subsidiary with design studios in California, Munich and Shanghai. Heilmer has been part of the BMW Group design team for 17 years and was responsible for interior design for the BMW brand up until 2016.
“The ‘MINI VISION NEXT 100’ provided an impressive demonstration of MINI’s future viability,” explained Adrian van Hooydonk, head of BMW Group Design. “I am confident that the MINI design team under Oliver Heilmer will implement this vision of the brand in future vehicle models and win over MINI customers. With his design expertise and experience, Oliver Heilmer combines continuity with the freshness and vision MINI stands for.”
In the MINI design team Heilmer will lead from September, Christopher Weil remains in charge of Exterior Design, with Kerstin Schmeding responsible for Colour and Material Design. Interior Design will be headed by Christian Bauer from 1 June.
Effective 1 September 2017, Heilmer will be succeeded as president of Designworks by Holger Hampf. Hampf was a member of the Designworks management team from 2002 and responsible for Product Design up until 2010, when he moved to an external design studio. Since returning to the BMW Group in 2014, the 50-year-old’s responsibilities have included user interface design and realigning the design team for digitalisation. “For me, Designworks is more than just a design studio; it is the strategic interface to our customers’ future living environment,” explained BMW Group Chief Designer Adrian van Hooydonk. “I am delighted to welcome Holger Hampf as president. He is an experienced colleague who knows Designworks well and brings the expertise we need for an increasingly digital customer experience.”
BMW Group Design makes strategic realignment for the future
The personnel changes and strengthening of key competence areas are part of the BMW Group Design realignment under corporate strategy NUMBER ONE > NEXT. The focus will be on shorter development cycles, increasing digitalisation of design processes, as well as products and mobility experiences. Small, agile project teams will also form part of the new structure.
A major focal point will be the design of brand-specific, interactive digital in-car experiences. Gernot Schmierer, who will take over as head of User Experience Design for the BMW Group effective 1 September, will focus on this topic. Schmierer will be responsible for vehicle-based design of interactive experiences – from vision to actual implementation.
As previously announced, Jozef Kabaň will take over as head of the BMW Automobiles design team in the second half of the year. Domagoj Dukec has been responsible for design for the BMW i and BMW M sub-brands since 1 March 2017. Giles Taylor remains in charge of design for Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, with Edgar Heinrich responsible for BMW Motorrad design. Laurenz Schaffer assumed the position of head of Division Management, Design Identity and Context Research in November 2016, while Werner Haumayr heads Group Design Strategy, Concepts, Technologies, Models and Experience.
“The whole team is highly motivated and excited about leading our brand design into a new era,” explained BMW Group Chief Designer Head Adrian van Hooydonk. “The decisive success factor in our industry remains the customer experience. The BMW Group design team will ensure that this experience remains emotionally-rewarding in the future, increasingly digital, world of mobility.”
The BMW Group
With its four brands BMW, MINI, Rolls-Royce and BMW Motorrad, the BMW Group is the world’s leading premium manufacturer of automobiles and motorcycles and also provides premium financial and mobility services. As a global company, the BMW Group operates 31 production and assembly facilities in 14 countries and has a global sales network in more than 140 countries.
In 2016, the BMW Group sold approximately 2.367 million cars and 145,000 motorcycles worldwide. The profit before tax was approximately € 9.67 billion on revenues amounting to € 94.16 billion. As of 31 December 2016, the BMW Group had a workforce of 124,729 employees.
The success of the BMW Group has always been based on long-term thinking and responsible action. The company has therefore established ecological and social sustainability throughout the value chain, comprehensive product responsibility and a clear commitment to conserving resources as an integral part of its strategy.
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