From September 1, Andile Dlamini has assumed responsibility as head of group communications at Volkswagen SA.
Dlamini, who has 15 years’ experience in public relations and communications in the automotive industry under his belt, previously enjoyed PR stints at BMW SA and then Toyota SA, before joining Volkswagen SA in 2008 as product public relations manager, which was then followed by a stint as personal assistant to the chairman and MD, Thomas Schaefer.
Matt Gennrich, the outgoing head of communications at VWSA, who officially retired from Volkswagen after 38 years of service in March, has been overseeing the transition on a contractual basis. He will continue to serve the company as a consultant until the end of the year but has relinquished his operational responsibilities as of September 1 and will continue to share his knowledge and expertise as required for the remainder of the year.
"We would like to thank Matt for his loyal service, dedication and contribution to the company in his many different roles over the years. Matt’s knowledge and passion for the automotive industry has been a great benefit to the company and he will be missed," said Schaefer.
Gennrich said his tenure as head of group communications had been a challenging and exciting one.
"I have had fantastic support from all sides of the automotive industry, but I am looking forward to my retirement. I wish Andile the best of luck in his new role."
Schaefer said Dlamini’s experience in public relations and the automotive industry, as well as his passion for the Volkswagen Group, made him the ideal candidate. "We wish Andile all the best in his new position."
Dlamini said it was an honour and privilege to represent in the public domain a brand with such strong roots and a rich history in SA.
"I look forward to the challenge of keeping the brand’s equity and its market leading position intact. However, I am not taking anything away from our competitors who will be valiantly trying to do the same as us, but I feel that my experience in the industry and the brand will keep us in good stead."