Stephen Odell, the new Volvo CEO, admitted the company needs to be revamped so the cost-cutting measures it already applied pretty much makes sense. Odell cut 4,000 jobs in the first months as a Volvo CEO and more tough decisions may be announced soon.
"I wanted to help the management team get Volvo back to sustainable profitability. Unless we are sustainably viable, the speculation (about a sale) is just that,” he told The Detroit news.
And more importantly, Odell acknowledges that safety is no longer attractive in a struggling auto market because people are more interested in technology innovations and more affordable solutions that could reduce costs in most areas, including fuel, insurance and maintenance.
"There is an incredible opportunity to up the styling. And I don't think there's any choice, because safety is boring. Whoever the owners of Volvo are, they will know that they are getting a brand with zero negative brand image,” Odell said.
But even so, Odell is confident the Swedish automaker has the ability to get back in business and became the attractive car manufacturer it was in the past. "I need to make Volvo profitable," he said. "I absolutely believe we can, but I'm not going to put a time line on it."