SOUTHFIELD, Mich. — Lear Corp. has announced that Matt Simoncini, senior vice president and chief financial officer, has been elected CEO and president effective Sept. 1. Simoncini also will join Lear’s board of directors on Sept. 1. In his new role, Simoncini will be responsible for the strategic direction and operational leadership of the company.
Simoncini succeeds Bob Rossiter, who will step down as CEO, president and a director of Lear, also on Sept. 1. Rossiter will remain in an advisory role until May 2012 to assist with the transition.
"Bob has been an exceptional leader and a driving force in building Lear Corp. into a world-class global enterprise with nearly $14 billion in annual sales and 200 facilities in 35 countries supported by 93,000 employees,” said Henry D. G. Wallace, non-executive chairman. “Bob fostered a culture of the highest business integrity, industry-leading customer service and support of the communities where Lear does business. On behalf of Lear’s Board of Directors and its customers, suppliers, employees and shareholders, I want to sincerely thank Bob for his dedicated service."
"I have been involved in the CEO succession process with the board and I am very supportive of the selection of Matt Simoncini to succeed me," said Rossiter. "I have worked closely with Matt over the years and I am confident that I am turning over Lear to very capable hands."
"Matt has worked at Lear and its predecessor companies for 15 years in positions of increasing responsibility, including a tour of duty in Europe. He is passionate about the business and he is an inspirational leader. Matt is very knowledgeable about Lear’s global operations, customers, products and employees, and he exemplifies the company’s core values of integrity, quality and customer service. He successfully led the company’s financial restructuring and has been instrumental in repositioning Lear for long-term success. Matt has been an exceptional chief financial officer, has led the company’s strategic planning efforts and he is now ready to assume the role as chief executive officer," added Wallace.
Currently, Simoncini is senior vice president and chief financial officer of Lear Corp., a role he has held since September 2007. As SVP and CFO, he is responsible for Lear’s global finance operations, including external financial reporting, corporate business planning and analysis, corporate strategy and business development as well as information technology activities worldwide.
In August 2006, he was named senior vice president of global finance and chief accounting officer where he was responsible for Lear’s worldwide operational finance, accounting and financial reporting. Prior to that, he was vice president of global finance, a position he had held since June 2004.
Simoncini also served as Lear’s vice president of finance Europe, as well as holding the vice president of Finance position for Lear’s Electrical & Electronics business and DaimlerChrysler division. Simoncini joined Lear from United Technologies Automotive (UTA) in April 1996 as director of finance for the Motors Division, with responsibility for the financial activities of the business unit. At the time of Lear’s acquisition of UTA, Simoncini was director of financial planning and analysis.
Previous to UTA, Simoncini held financial and manufacturing positions with Varity Kelsey Hayes and Horizon Enterprises, including chief financial officer of Kelsey Hayes’ European Operations. Simoncini began his career at Touche Ross and is a certified public accountant.
"Lear is truly a great company, and I am honored to have been elected as CEO. Bob is leaving the company in a very strong competitive position, with positive earnings momentum, the best team in the industry and significant cash resources to fund future growth. I look forward to continuing to deliver superior quality and customer service and to sustaining Lear’s positive momentum," Simoncini commented.
Born and raised in Detroit, Simoncini earned a bachelor’s degree from Wayne State University and is a member of the Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants. In addition to his responsibilities at Lear, he is a trustee for VIP Mentoring and also a member of the United Way for Southeastern Michigan Campaign Committee.