Changes in Škoda Auto Communications: Tom Drechsler succeeds Ariane Kilian

Mladá Boleslav, 26 June 2023 – Tom Drechsler will be taking over the management of Škoda’s Communication department as of 1 July. Until March 2023 he served as Editor-in-Chief of AUTO BILD and Managing Director of the AUTO BILD Group. He succeeds Ariane Kilian, an experienced journalist and communications manager, who will be temporarily leaving the Volkswagen Group for personal reasons.

“Ariane Kilian has had a profound impact on Škoda’s Communication strategy, leading innovative campaigns such as our electric offensive through Explore More and Let’s Explore and establishing a forward-oriented positioning for our brand. Her expertise, creativity, and dedication to Škoda have set a high bar in our industry. I respect and understand her decision to prioritise her personal life now. At the same time, I am delighted that we have secured a seasoned automotive and communication expert in Tom Drechsler to continue our path forward.”

Klaus Zellmer, Škoda Auto CEO

“I would like to thank Klaus Zellmer for his trust and our fruitful collaboration. I have full confidence that Tom Drechsler will continue to strengthen Škoda’s position in the era of electromobility. He will be backed by a strong and motivated communication team. My heartfelt thanks go out to my team and the entire Škoda family for the time I have spent in the Czech Republic!”

Ariane Kilian

Kilian assumed her position in June 2022 when Klaus Zellmer took over as CEO of Škoda Auto. A trained journalist, she has been part of the Volkswagen Group since 2006, following her roles at Burda Publishing House, Frankfurter Rundschau, and as a press representative in the German Bundestag. She was at the helm of the Volkswagen Group’s Internal Communications, as well as the Volkswagen Group’s Components Communications and the Board’s Technical Communications, where she made significant contributions to the internal and external communication of the Group’s shift to electromobility and battery cell production.

Tom Drechsler is set to take over the leadership of Škoda Auto Communications on 1 July 2023. The accomplished journalist began his career in Lüneburg before joining Axel Springer Publishing in 1991. Drechsler held various key roles, such as BILD’s political editor and deputy Editor-in-Chief of BILD am SONNTAG. From August 2017 to February 2023, he led AUTO BILD as Editor-in-Chief and Managing Director, spearheading automotive topics across all BILD Group titles.

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