Volkswagen Group South Africa has confirmed Thomas Schaefer, the company’s chairman and managing director, has moved to Škoda in the position of global CEO.

Škoda is, of course, a wholly owned Czech subsidiary of the VW Group. 

Schaefer’s switch is effective from 3 August 2020. He will be replaced by Dr Robert Cisek, who is currently responsible for the production strategy of the Volkswagen passenger cars brand in Wolfsburg.

Schaefer has been at VW SA's helm since February 2015, with his role expanded in 2017 to include responsibility for sub-Saharan Africa.

“My tenure as the MD of VW SA has been the highlight of my career so far. I am immensely proud to have worked for and led such an impactful and good company,” said Schaefer.

“Together with my team, we have moved VW SA forward with outstanding production and sales results which have earned our company recognition locally and abroad.”

The 44-year-old Cisek holds a doctorate degree in industrial management and a degree in mechanical engineering, both from the Technical University of Munich. He joined VW in 2018 from the BMW Group.