Recently Departed Hyundai Sales Exec Appears Suddenly on Volkswagen Payroll

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
recently departed hyundai sales exec appears suddenly on volkswagen payroll

Earlier this week, former Hyundai executive Derrick Hatami appeared to be a corporate sacrificial lamb — slaughtered by the Korean automaker to appease the angry sales gods. His abrupt departure from the company seemed to be an under-the-rug firing. However, his former employer quickly reached to us to explain Hatami had left on his own accord, wishing him well. While that’s often the boilerplate explanation when an executive is forcibly ousted from a large company, Hyundai wasn’t lying.

Hatami appeared, as if by magic, on Volkswagen of America roster less than 48 hours after news of his exodus broke. The current assumption is that his apparent firing from Hyundai was, in fact, a poaching maneuver undertaken by VW. Otherwise, this man has the most incredible interviewing skills on planet Earth.

Derrick Hatami is now the new executive vice president for sales and marketing for Volkswagen of America, and will be undertaking many of the same tasks he did at Hyundai.

“We are excited to welcome Derrick at Volkswagen of America,” Hinrich Woebcken, CEO for the region, said in the hiring announcement. “His proven record of leadership experience in the automotive industry will serve as an asset as we work towards growth in the U.S. market.”

At Volkswagen, Hatami replaces Mark McNabb, who became CEO of the company’s energy subsidiary Electrify America in February. McNabb will be responsible for the management of VW’s $2 billion investment into the U.S. electrical infrastructure as part of its emission scandal settlement with state and federal regulators. Meanwhile, Hatami will be responsible for setting sales goals, driving product, overseeing marketing efforts, product planning, and establishing aftersales strategy for North America.

[Image: Volkswagen]

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  • CincyDavid CincyDavid on Jun 09, 2017

    Nothing career-limiting about it...if you backed the wrong horse and were too closely aligned with the outgoing CEO, you NEED to have a Plan-B and get somewhere to land in case the new CEO doesn't like you.

  • Rod Panhard Rod Panhard on Jun 09, 2017

    And what's more, that Hyundai contacted you to correct the story about their former employee speaks volumes about the situation, and the parties involved. Way to go Hyundai! Good for you Volkswagen. As a car enthusiast, I look forward to your successes.

  • Robert Levins I love the Stutz lavish luxury designs but this one has a tough time blending “Squared” off 1980’s roof line with previous decades of beautiful sweeping fenders, hoods, and deck lids. I do like this one for what it is, I admire it. I can see this model doing well with the big oil Saudis and such. If I had a lot money and wanted a”Stutz” car I would most likely not be buying this one.
  • Jkross22 Current Mazda interiors match or beat Audi. Chunky buttons, clicky knobs, big displays - pity that Mazda hasn't figured out how to boot the crappy Bose system and offer up something better. No shortage of audio companies that could help with that.
  • Skippity “Things To Watch Out For When Buying a 1979 Mercury Cougar XR-7.” A 1979 Mercury Cougar XR-7.
  • Mike Beranek Would you cross this man? No way!
  • Skippity I kinda like styling. There’s plenty of lookalike boxes on the road. Nice to see something unique.