MUMBAI – India’s Tata Motors said yesterday that managing director Karl Slym had died after a fall in Bangkok, where he was attending a board meeting of the company’s Thailand arm.
“Karl joined us in October 2012, and was a valued colleague who was providing strong leadership at a challenging time for the Indian auto industry,” said Tata Motors chairman Cyrus P. Mistry.
“In this hour of grief, our thoughts are with Karl’s wife and family,” the Press Trust of India quoted him as saying.
People close to the company said it was an accident and that Mr Slym, 51, "lost his balance" and fell from his hotel room which was on a high floor, India’s The Economic Times reported.
His post-mortem report was due today, a company spokesman said, but gave no further details.
Mr Slym took the helm in 2012 when Tata Motors was gripped by protracted losses and hit a historic low of 8.5 per cent in passenger vehicle sales, said the Times.
He was credited with overhauling the company by disbanding bloated management structure and rendering operations more streamlined.
Before joining Tata Motors, Mr Slym was the executive vice-president of China’s SGMW Motors.