With demand faltering behind expectations, Ford recently decided to scale back its planned investments into electrification, slashing planned 2024 Ford F-150 Lightning production in half and downsizing the output of its under-construction Ford BlueOval SK Battery Park Michigan site. Additionally, the automaker announced that it will still build two plants at the future Ford BlueOval SK Battery Park site in Kentucky, though it will only operate one of them for the time being, though that also means hiring fewer people for the plant, too. In the meantime, the automaker’s joint venture with South Korean battery maker SK On named Robert Rhee as its new CEO back in January, but now, Rhee is heading into an advisory role and handing over the top spot in the company to Michael Adams, the company has announced.
Adams has 30 combined years of experience in the automotive industry, having previously spending time at Halla Visteon, Visteon Corporation, and Ford Motor Company in a number of markets including Germany, China, and South Korea. Now, he’s tasked with spending time at both BlueOval SK Battery Park in Kentucky and the BlueOval SK battery plant at BlueOval City in Tennessee.
“Michael Adams brings a wealth of manufacturing experience on an international level, understanding both American and Asian cultures,” said BlueOval SK Human Resources Director Neva Burke. “He will position BlueOval SK well in preparation for the start of production in 2025.”
“It is an honor to step into the role of CEO at BlueOval SK. I am thrilled about the opportunity to work on the cutting edge of battery and manufacturing technology,” Adams said. “I am greatly looking forward to joining and collaborating with the innovative team at BlueOval SK to help shape the future of mobility for our global customers and our local community.”