DETROIT — Julia Steyn, head of General Motors’ urban mobility and Maven brand, is no longer with the company, Automotive News has learned. It’s unclear whether Steyn’s departure — effective Thursday — was voluntary. It is not believed to be part of the automaker’s plan to cut 15 percent of its salaried work force in North America, including 25 percent of its global executives, according to a source familiar with the matter.
A GM spokeswoman declined to comment on the departure. Steyn, a vice president, could not immediately be reached for comment. Steyn, 43, was hired by GM to lead its mergers and acquisitions business in April 2012.
She oversaw those operations for three and a half years before being given oversight of urban mobility in 2015, followed by Maven upon its creation in January 2016. Known as an outside-the-box thinker, Steyn had ambitions to develop Maven into a sharing platform, not just for cars. But the long-term plan for Maven, its place within GM and how to expand it into a profitable business haven’t always been clear.
Steyn’s departure is not expected to impact Maven’s operations, according to the source, who agreed to speak on the condition of anonymity. Maven’s most recent endeavor included the expansion of peer-to-peer vehicle sharing to non-GM vehicles, which was expected to occur in mid-2019. Maven’s current peer-to-peer initiative — launched in July 2018 — allows owners and eligible lessees of GM vehicles (2015 and newer) to make them available on its car-sharing platform for cash. Steyn came to GM from aluminum giant Alcoa Inc. She joined the supplier in 2008 as a director in the company’s business development organization after six years at Goldman Sachs when she worked in London, Moscow and New York.
Steyn is at least the second executive of note to depart from Maven in the past year. Peter Kosak, executive director of urban mobility, left in February 2018 after a 32-year career with GM, according to his LinkedIn profile. He is now vice president of automotive at Nauto, a Silicon Valley startup that focuses on artificial intelligence and vehicle fleets.