After receiving the regulatory approvals, Mercedes-Benz AG and Geely have announced the formal establishment of the global joint venture ‘smart Automobile Co., Ltd.’ for the smart brand.
Tong Xiangbei has been appointed the new global CEO of the smart joint venture and will oversee all operations relating to the brand including sales, marketing, R&D, production and after sales.
Before joining Geely, Mr. Tong spent 17 years working at Ford’s global facilities in the U.S, China and in the Asia Pacific region.
The global headquarters of the new joint venture has been set in Hangzhou Bay, Ningbo with operational sales functions based in China and Germany.
Ola Källenius, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Mercedes-Benz AG, says: “Having received all necessary regulatory approvals we are now ready to start the joint venture with our partner Geely that has been in preparation for the past several months. The joint venture will bring the next generation of zero-emission smart electric cars to the Chinese and global markets.”
Li Shufu, Geely Holding Chairman, adds: “The smart brand has a unique value and global influence, it has grown to be a leader in urban mobility. Geely Holding will fully support the smart brand with its full advantages in R&D, manufacturing, supply chain and other fields into the joint venture and support its development in China and globally. We will work together with Mercedes-Benz to transform the smart brand into a leading player in urban premium, electric and connected vehicles to successfully develop the brand’s global potential.”
The new generation of smart vehicles will be designed by the worldwide Mercedes-Benz Design network and developed by the Geely global engineering network. Future production will be located in China.