Friday, June 13, 2014

Big Changes in Leadership at BMW

Hans Blesse

BMW Group recently announced several changes coming to its senior management teams in Canada and the United States.

Chairman and CEO of BMW Group Region Americas, Ludwig Willisch, broke news of the planned departure of Eduardo Villaverde, President and CEO of BMW Group Canada. Villaverde first joined BMW Group in 1995, ascended to serve as CEO of BMW Spain, and transferred to this leadership role at BMW’s Ontario-based Canadian subsidiary in 2011.

Hans Blesse will replace Villaverde as President and CEO of BMW Group Canada, effective by the beginning of June. Blesse has served as vice president of New Jersey-based BMW Motorrad USA since 2012, and his career with BMW spans 27 years, throughout which he has achieved success in sales, marketing, aftersales and training in subsidiary divisions across the globe.

Kris Odwarka succeeded Blesse on May 13, and assumes responsibility for motorcycle sales and marketing in the United States. Odwarka has served as regional aftersales manager, Southern Region, since February 2013, and began his career with BMW as a sales trainer for BMW of North America in 1992.

“I want to thank Eduardo for his years of service to BMW Group and we all wish him well in his new endeavors,” said Willisch. “For Hans Blesse, his new role in Canada will be a homecoming of sorts and I know he will do well in our very important Canadian market. Kris Odwarka has a great passion for motorcycles and he is excited about leading BMW Motorrad and we are expecting great results.”

For more information about BMW of North America, visit

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