Pendragon names industry veteran Bill Berman as CEO

(Reuters) - Auto dealership Pendragon PDG.L has named interim boss Bill Berman as its new chief executive officer, putting the former operating chief of leading U.S. peer AutoNation AN.N in charge a year after his recruitment to the UK company's board.

Berman, who was made interim executive chairman in October, will be tasked with navigating the firm through a tough period for the car industry that saw Pendragon warn of worsening losses last September.

He has over 30 years of experience in the automotive retail sector and fills a role that has been vacant since Mark Herbert quit after just three months in charge last June.

Berman, 53, left AutoNation after 20 years in 2017.

“I look forward to building on strong relationships with our team members, customers, suppliers, our OEM partners and investors as we move forward together in a period of rapid change and innovation in the automotive retail sector,” he said.

The company, which operates the Evans Halshaw, Stratstone and Quickco brands, said Berman would also continue in his role as interim chairman while it searches for a replacement.

GRAPHIC: Pendragon underperforms auto dealership rivals in the past year

Reporting by Yadarisa Shabong in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta and Patrick Graham