Plymouth's Adient taps DelGrosso as new CEO

Breana Noble
The Detroit News
Adient plc's board of directors appointed on Thursday Douglas G. DelGrosso as the Plymouth-based automotive seating supplier's president and CEO.

Plymouth-based Adient PLC said Thursday that it had named Douglas G. DelGrosso as its new president and CEO.

The automotive seating supplier's leadership shakeup comes as the company has struggled to consistently make a profit since spinning off from Johnson Controls Inc. in October 2016. Adient's board of directors selected DelGrosso, Southfield-based Chassix's CEO, to replace Fritz Henderson, who has served as interim CEO since June. DelGrosso starts his new job Oct. 1.

In the second fiscal quarter of 2018, Adient reported revenue of $4.6 billion with a net loss of $168 million, hurting from its money-losing seat structures and mechanisms division. In 2017, it had a net income of $877 million, but the company is $3.3 billion in debt.

A week after Henderson replaced former CEO Bruce McDonald, who retired, the company announced it was scrapping its $100-million plans to move its headquarters to Detroit that would have brought 500 executive and leadership employees, including 100 proposed new jobs to the city.

McDonald had led the company since its spinoff. Henderson will continue as a non-executive chairman on the company's board.

DelGrosso brings extensive experience in the automotive industry to Adient. Since January 2016, DelGrosso has led and expanded Chassix, a manufacturer of aluminum and iron cast and machined chassis sub-frame automotive components. From 2012 to 2015, he was president and CEO at Auburn Hills-based Henniges Automotive. Prior to that, DelGrosso spent time at TRW Automotive and Lear Corp.

John Barth, Adient's interim chairman, said in a statement that DelGrosso "brings the right vision, leadership experience and operational expertise needed to drive Adient's transformation forward."

Adient shares were up more than 3 percent Thursday morning.