(Adds spokesman comments, details, share move)
By Esha Vaish
STOCKHOLM, Dec 20 (Reuters) - Veoneer finance chief Mathias Hermansson has decided to leave the company having assumed the post only in April when the electronic car products maker was spun out of parent Autoliv .
The move comes less than two months after Veoneer, which focuses on high-tech safety gear aimed at self-driving cars, pushed back its sales and margin targets, partly blaming production delays at customers struggling with tougher regulations and faltering demand.
Several carmakers including customers Daimler and Hyundai have issued warnings as new emissions rules have delayed vehicle sales in Europe and due to weak demand in China, the world’s biggest auto market.
Veoneer’s Stockholm-listed shares have shed half of their value from their August high and were down 4 percent at 231.80 Swedish crowns at 1449 GMT, trading far below the stock’s debut price.
The Swedish company said on Thursday that Hermansson, who has previously worked as the executive chairman of Swedish media company Modern Times Group’s digital division MTGx, was leaving to “seek new opportunities”.
He did not immediately reply to a request seeking comment.
Spokesman Thomas Jonsson said the CFO’s departure was not related to the market or stock performance, but rather the responsibilities of his job.
Hermansson told Veoneer in internal meetings that the role was “maybe not exactly what he wanted” since it required spending a large amount of time focusing on process controlling and organisation business, Jonsson explained.
“His decision to leave is not about Veoneer, it is about his personal view on the role and we have to respect that,” the spokesman said. “Mathias is excited for Veoneer, he really believes in the company.”
Jonsson said Veoneer was “seeing” a weak China in the first half of 2019 but that it “might have a strong” second half, while Europe could stabilise a “little faster” than expected.
Veoneer said Hermansson, who has a six month notice period, would continue in the role until his replacement is appointed.
Reporting by Esha Vaish in Stockholm Editing by Johannes Hellstrom/Keith Weir