Bombardier announced June 14 the following retirements and changes in responsibility for members of its Senior Leadership.
Effective immediately, Jim Vounassis is appointed chief operating officer for Bombardier Transportation. Vounassis will report directly to Laurent Troger and join BT’s core leadership team. He will have responsibility for BT’s global operations, quality and procurement functions, as well as its overall industrial strategy. In this new position, Vounassis will focus on driving operational excellence and delighting customers with improved quality and delivery performance as we execute on our rail backlog of more than $35 billion.
“Jim is well suited for this role given his long track record of performance, including most recently leading Bombardier’s Transformation and Procurement organizations, said Alain Bellemare, president and chief executive officer, Bombardier Inc. “Jim’s proven leadership ability and operational expertise will help accelerate BT’s transformation efforts, securing its long-term competitive position in the fast growing global rail market.”
A new organizational structure for the transformation and procurement organizations supporting Bombardier’s aerospace units will be announced in the near future; until then Vounassis will maintain leadership responsibility.
“With the first half of our five-year turnaround plan successfully completed, Sylvain Lévesque has informed me of his desire to leave Bombardier and pursue the next chapter of his career, Bellemare explained. “I am extremely grateful for Sylvain’s many contributions to Bombardier over the past 20 years, especially his strong leadership on many key initiatives, insights and sound counsel since I joined Bombardier. We will all miss the great camaraderie, and the extreme professionalism Sylvain has brought to our company.”
Going forward, Louis Véronneau will assume responsibility for Bombardier’s strategic planning process in addition to his current role overseeing Bombardier’s partnerships, mergers, acquisitions and divestures as Bombardier’s senior vice president, Strategy and Corporate Development.
“Louis is well qualified to assume this expanded role given his deep analytical skills, strong financial background and demonstrated leadership ability,” Bellemare continued. “Louis spearheaded the negotiations for many of Bombardier’s key strategic partnerships and divestitures, including the C Series partnership with Airbus and Investissement Québec, CDPQ’s investment in Bombardier Transportation and Bombardier’s sale of the Downsview property. With the company successfully de-risked, Louis will work closely with me and the rest of the leadership team to identify and execute strategic moves that support long-term sustainable growth across our portfolio.”
“Finally, Nico Buchholz has advised me of his wish to retire later this summer,” Bellemare explained.
Buchholz was recruited to join Bombardier in 2015 as Group chief procurement officer and to support several other key projects including the C Series ramp-up. During his tenure at Bombardier, Buchholz achieved significant cost savings by establishing a more efficient and focused procurement organization, and successfully lead numerous other strategic initiatives and restructurings across the businesses.
“With the Airbus partnership effective on July 1, 2018 and his other projects drawing to a close, Nico has chosen to take on a new challenge. We are grateful for Nico’s many important contributions to Bombardier, including his vision and leadership in supporting Bombardier’s turnaround plan,” Bellemare stated.