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Ford Snaps Up Toyota Exec as Marketing Chief

Ford Motor is expected to name long-time Toyota Motorexecutive Jim Farley to head its marketing division, a person familiar with the matter said Thursday.

Farley, who has been with Toyota since 1990, is group vice president and general manager of the company's Lexus division and was previously group vice president of the flagship Toyota division.

Shares of Ford leaped almost 7 percent Thursday. Toyota shares were steady.

Both Toyota and Ford are expected to announce Farley's move as early as Thursday, the source said.

Both automakers declined to comment.

Farley would be the third Toyota executive to join a Detroit automaker recently, following Chrysler's hiring of veteran Toyota executive Jim Press and Lexus marketing executive Deborah Wahl Meyer.

Ford Chief Executive Alan Mulally, who has openly criticized some of Ford's marketing efforts, is under pressure to stem the protracted decline in the automaker's U.S. sales.

Ford, which lost its No. 2 spot in the U.S. market to Toyota this year, is working to hold its overall share of the U.S. light-vehicle market at about 14 percent. It is shutting 16 plants and cutting more than 50,000 jobs in a restructuring.

Ford's current overall U.S. market share is about 16 percent. It has lost about 1 percentage point of its share every year since 2000 as consumers have moved away from heavier and less fuel-efficient SUVs.

The automaker's previous North American sales and marketing chief, Francisco Codina, is expected to retire on Nov. 1, and Ford had said it was looking for a new marketing boss.