ABB appoints Michael Mahfet to head North American Robotics business

Former General Electric executive brings sales, marketing and technology expertise.

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ABB announced the appointment of Michael Mahfet as vice president and general manager of its robotics business in North American, according to Rick Hepperla, regional president of ABB's Discrete Automation & Motion division. Mahfet, who joined ABB on May 13, 2010, will lead the North American robotics business based in Auburn Hills, MI and will focus on the strategic development and continued profitable growth of the business in the region.

Prior to joining ABB, Mahfet served as the general manager of global sales of the Sensing & Inspection Technologies unit of General Electric (GE). During his career at GE Mahfet has held increasingly significant roles in sales, marketing and technology leadership. Prior to GE Mahfet was a product engineer at Chrysler Corp.

Mahfet holds a bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering as well as a master's degree in Mechanical Engineering, both from Oakland University in Rochester, MI. Mahfet will serve as a management team member for both ABB's global robotics management team and its Discrete Automation & Motion division management team in North America.

"It's a great time to be part of ABB. As the overall economy improves, we will be able to leverage ABB's longstanding tradition of quality and technology leadership in the Robotics marketplace, with deep domain expertise in traditional automotive applications, as well as our rapidly expanding expertise for material handling and assembly applications in general industries,” said Mahfet.

The industrial robotic business in North American is beginning to rebound, as new orders jumped 16% in unit volume and 30% in dollar sales in the first quarter of 2010 compared to the same quarter in 2009, according to the Robotic Industries Association (RIA), the industry's trade group.
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