Isuzu Australia's new network development manager Ella Letiagina

Isuzu has announced the appointment of a new head of network development following another record year of truck sales, for the Japanese truck maker in Australia.

The company has announced it has appointed former Iveco and Mitsubishi Motors executive, Ella Letiagina to the role saying that it is a move to strengthen its dealer network with the appointment of an experienced automotive industry executive.

Letiagina was previously  the marketing and network boss at rival truck maker Iveco and Isuzu says she brings a depth of automotive and management experience, both in Australia and internationally, with a  background in law and with a Master of Business Administration in economics and management.

IAL director and COO, Andrew Harbison said Ms Letiagina’s appointment further strengthens the company’s leadership team.

“Heading up the Network Development team the aim is to continue to strengthen our relationship with our dealers and to look at how we can continue to meet the needs of our customers now and into the future,” Harbison said.

“Ella comes to us with extensive experience in the automotive industry both locally and overseas and brings some unique perspectives into the IAL leadership team.”

Ella Letiagina’s automotive experience began on the floor of a dealership in Europe. She subsequently worked her way through all levels of the industry, including product, sales, supply chain, network development and business development for several different passenger vehicle and truck brands.

“When I look at an idea, I tend to put on each hat and consider what the dealer will think, what the customer will think and what the manufacturer will think,” said Letiagina.

Letiagina moves into the role formerly managed by Ben Lasry, who stepped up to become Isuzu’s chief of sales and aftersales late last night.

“In the first quarter I’m planning to meet as many key dealers across the Isuzu Australia network as possible,” she said.

Letiagina said Isuzu Trucks’ 34 consecutive years of market leadership was a phenomenal feat.

“I believe this is something unique which is not repeated anywhere else in the world,” she said.

“This is not just one generation of management, it’s several generations of management, in the dealerships as well.”

After delivering record sales amid several years of covid-related lockdowns, border closures and supply chain disruptions, Letiagina said IAL’s dealer network is now preparing for the future.

“The main focus this year is to work with the dealers, to establish a relationship, to listen to them, understand all the challenges and how we can work together to continue to grow Isuzu,” she said.

“Within the training department, we plan to spend time reviewing our training offering to provide dealers training programs that reflect the dynamic nature of the truck industry.”

As well as being fascinated with technology and innovation, Letiagina said she drew on her legal background to understand the changes to Australia’s franchise code.

“I am looking forward to bringing some fresh eyes and experience in this role and it’s really exciting to be working with such a successful and forward-thinking organisation in IAL.”