Business: Ford's Future

Henry II steps out—partly

The plump, graying man stood up in his shirtsleeves last week in the sweltering 88° heat of Melbourne, Australia, and made a surprising announcement. Said Chairman Henry Ford II to his firm's local managers: "By the end of this year I will have relinquished my executive responsibilities with the Ford Motor Co."

Thus the celebrated dynast signaled that he was letting go of a $43 billion company he has headed for 34 years. It has been generally thought that Ford would start phasing out after Sept. 4, 1980, when he...

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