In a move to boost its software-driven initiatives, Ford has onboarded Peter Stern, an ex-Apple heavyweight, to steer its novel Ford Integrated Services division. This new unit aims to craft and promote software-centric experiences across Ford’s triad of business entities: Ford Blue, dedicated to gas and hybrid vehicles; Model e, the hub for connected electric vehicles; and Ford Pro, the go-to for commercial products.
As vehicles become increasingly software-driven, Ford’s strategy pivots towards enhancing service personalization, intertwining hardware-software relations, and creating novel revenue avenues. While Ford’s Q2 revenue was an impressive $45 billion, they project their EV segment might see a slump with a $4.5 billion loss in 2023. Their solution? Lean on software to bridge this financial chasm.
The duties of Ford Integrated Services span further refining tech offerings such as the Ford BlueCruise, a hands-free highway assistance system. Additionally, the unit’s ambitions include solutions for fleet management, telematics, and EV charging. Out of their half a million plus paid software and service subscribers, a whopping 80% associate with Ford Pro.
Apart from this, Stern’s leadership will also encompass Ford Next, the company’s global venture studio. It’s noteworthy to mention the recent controversial departure of Ford Next’s CEO, Franck Louis-Victor, who faced legal challenges but is now reported to be on leave.
Ford’s strategic move to secure a seasoned Apple executive not only reinforces its commitment to a software-driven automotive future but also showcases its intent to rival tech giants venturing into the auto space. Stern’s rich experience with Apple can be a game-changer for Ford as they navigate the challenges of intertwining technology with traditional automobile functions. This move exemplifies how legacy automakers are reimagining their role in the age of connected and autonomous vehicles.