Shares of Hertz jump after appointment of ex-Ford CEO Mark Fields as interim CEO


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Hertz rental cars are parked in a rental lot near Detroit Metropolitan airport in Romulus, Michigan.
Rebecca Cook | Reuters

Shares of Hertz Global on Tuesday were up by as much as 13.3% after the car rental company named former Ford CEO Mark Fields as its interim chief executive officer.

Fields, who led Ford from 2014 to 2017, joined the Hertz board of directors in June. He is a senior advisor to TPG Capital and a CNBC contributor.

Hertz said Fields succeeds Paul Stone, who is becoming president and chief operations officer.

The appointments are effective immediately, according to the company.

Hertz is at a important stage after its emergence from bankruptcy in June. The company’s operations were devastated last year by the coronavirus pandemic, forcing it to restructure and shed debt.

“Hertz’s unmatched global footprint will be combined with forward-looking investments that completely change the face of travel and mobility,” Fields said in a statement. “The world is going to be hearing a lot from Hertz in the weeks and months ahead.”

Shares of Hertz jumped by 11.4% to $22.45 as of 11:15 a.m. Tuesday.

In May, Hertz said a group of investors, including Knighthead Capital Management, Certares Opportunities and Apollo Capital Management, were funding the company’s exit from Chapter 11 bankruptcy and a $6 billion turnaround plan.

Fields is not necessarily known as a turnaround expert. He spent 22 years at Ford before being ousted from leading the automaker in 2017 due to the company’s lagging stock price and lack of a solid vision for the automaker regarding electric and autonomous vehicles.

At Ford, he succeeded former Boeing Commercial Airplanes CEO Alan Mulally, who is credited with turning around the automaker’s operations and keeping it out of bankruptcy during the Great Recession.

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