Volvo has had a big news day today, with reports of a major celebrity endorsement for China, a new design department head in Sweden and a possible plant for North America.
Basketball sensation Jeremy Lin of the New York Knicks is said to be negotiating with Volvo to endorse their cars in China. The Taiwanese basketball player has become a major celebrity in China, Taiwan and the United States for his impressive season and his Harvard University background. This would be Lin’s first major endorsement besides his deal with Nike, signed in 2010.
Volvo will also be bringing Thomas Ingenlath over from Volkswagen to replace Peter Horbury as their new design head. Ingenlath was responsible for designs such as the Skoda Superb and the VW Bluesport concept during his two decade tenure at Volkswagen.
And finally, Volvo will investigate the possibility of a North American assembly plant. According to Automotive News
“Obviously one of our weaknesses is that we depend too much on the euro, and we have to take the U.S. dollar and euro equation into consideration,” Jacoby said during an interview on the sidelines of the Geneva auto show. “We need to solve that problem; we need to solve that part of the strategy.”
Mexico and the United States are under consideration for the new factory. Volvo formerly operated a plant in Halifax, Canada that closed in 1998.