BMW Strategic Realignment Makes Oliver Heilmer New Head Of MINI Design

Jun 02, 2017 03:58 AM EDT | Gerone Trish

BMW has just announced that Oliver Heilmer will be the new head of MINI Design. The company has full confidence that Heilmer can implement the vision for MINI because of his design expertise.

BMW has made a press release announcing that Heilmer will take the new post on Sept. 1, 2017. The realignment is part of the company's corporate strategy NUMBER ONE > NEXT.

The reassignment of Heilmer also agrees with the brand's vision, "NEXT 100 Vision Vehicles" that was unveiled last year. The vision describes the future viability of MINI.

Adrian van Hooydonk, head of BMW Group Design, expressed his confidence in Heilmer through the press release. According to Hooydonk, he strongly believes that "the MINI design team under Oliver Heilmer will implement this vision of the brand in future vehicle models and win over MINI customers."

Hooydonk further vouched for Heilmer by mentioning that the latter has the necessary experience and design expertise. The former also added that "Heilmer combines continuity with the freshness and vision MINI stands for."

Oliver Heilmer is the existing president of Designworks, a BMW Group subsidiary with design studios in Munich, California and Shanghai. He has been with the company since 2000 and has worked as head of the interior design team until 2016. Christian Bauer has now taken charge of the Interior Design from June 1.

With regard to the MINI design team effective Sept. 1, the official statement reveals that Christopher Weil is retained as head of Exterior Design. Whereas, Kerstin Schmeding will take charge of Color and Material Design.

Holger Hampf will be the new president of Designworks when Heilmer leaves his post. Hampf started as a member of the Designworks management team since 2002 and was in-charge of Product Design until he left for another design studio in 2010. When he returned to the BMW Group in 2014, he took charge of user interface design and realignment of the design team for digitalization.

Meanwhile, former BMW and MINI design executive Frank Stephenson was allegedly returning to the company to lead the MINI design team. However, the company decided to employ an internal candidate.

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