Chinese media outlet Auto-time reported on August 11 that it has learned from several sources that Li Ruifeng, SVP of Great Wall Motor (GWM) and CEO of GWM’s WEY brand, will be promoted to the position of Chief Growth Officer, overseeing the company’s branding business.
“Li will still head the business of WEY, and the CEOs of brands such as HAVAL, ORA and TANK will report to Li,” one source said.
Li joined Great Wall Motor in 2003 and has nearly 20 years experience in auto marketing. During the marketing business of Great Wall Motor, Li led the company to achieve “sales exceeding one million” for four consecutive years.
Great Wall Motor was established in 1984, and has five brands: HAVAL, WEY, ORA, Pickup and TANK. The CEO of each brand reports directly to Chairman Wei Jianjun. Wang Fengying stepped down this year as executive director, vice chairman, member of the Strategy and Sustainable Development Committee and general manager of the company. Wei Jianjun has also gradually changed positions from on-stage to behind the scenes.
Wei seemingly intends to change the marketing methodology and style of Great Wall Motor According to informed sources, “Wei likes liveliness and excitement, and Great Wall Motors needs more topics to attract attention.” On July 6, Li Ruifeng sent a Weibo post disapproving of Huawei Terminal BG CEO Richard Yu’s “mainstream theory of extended-range technology,” arguing that extended-range hybrid technology lags behind the industry consensus.
As a result of this fight, Li Ruifeng initially set up a personal image as a technician, precisely in line with Wei Jianjun’s “attracting attention” requirements.
One insider said, “The senior executives of Great Wall Motor studied internet companies such as Huawei and ByteDance and learned their team operation mode.” The change was carried out internally. One measure is to introduce a rotating president system, which originated from Huawei and was later adopted by internet giants such as Alibaba and JD.com.