Former Husqvarna President Kris Odwarka has been appointed the new vice president of BMW Motorrad USA, taking over from Hans Blesse who is leaving the position to head the BMW Group’s Canadian subsidiary. Odwarka (pictured on the left, above) will be in charge of BMW motorcycle sales and marketing in the U.S. starting on June 1.
Odwarka first joined the BMW family in 1992 as a sales trainer for BMW of North America. He later served various other positions in the company before being promoted to the Corporate Sales department at BMW’s headquarters in Munich, Germany. In 2010, Odwarka returned to the U.S. as president of then-BMW subsidiary Husqvarna.
Following the sale of Husqvarna to Pierer Industries, last January, Odwarka stayed with BMW, most recently serving as regional sales manager for the Southern Region.
His predecessor Blesse (right in the top photo) is returning to Canada where he started with BMW in 1987. Blesse has been vice president of BMW Motorrad USA since April 2012 and has held several roles with BMW in sales, marketing, aftersales and training in Canada and the U.S., as well as Spain and Germany.
Blesse is replacing Eduardo Villaverde as president and chief executive officer of BMW Canada.
“I want to thank Eduardo for his years of service to BMW Group and we all wish him well in his new endeavors,” says Ludwig Willisch, chairman and CEO of BMW Group Region Americas. “For Hans Blesse, his new role in Canada will be a homecoming of sorts and I know he will do well in our very important Canadian market. Kris Odwarka has a great passion for motorcycles and he is excited about leading BMW Motorrad and we are expecting great results.”