Doug Field has made the largest Ford Motor Co. share purchase by an executive outside the Ford family in at least 20 years, according to a company that tracks stock transactions.
Field, a former Apple and Tesla executive who is now Ford’s chief electric vehicle, digital and design officer, bought $2 million worth of stock in the automaker, according to a Dec. 11 filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. He acquired 182,000 shares at $11.05 each.
His purchase is double the $1 million in stock that then-COO Jim Farley purchased in May 2020 as he tried to project optimism in the company’s recovery plans early during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Doug has a substantial ownership interest in Ford stock, which shows he believes in the company’s future,” a Ford spokesperson said in a statement to Automotive News.
VerityData said Field’s purchase is the largest by a nonfamily Ford insider since its database began in 2004. Ben Silverman, VerityData’s director of research, said it’s also a sign that Field believes the stock is undervalued.
“When you look at what Ford and Field in his position are trying to accomplish, you can get the idea he’s making a long-term bet,” Silverman said in an interview.
He said the purchase is especially notable because Field’s compensation already is more tied to the company’s stock price than other Ford executives.
“That makes it very compelling when you see someone who is getting a significant dollar value of stock every year, which removes the incentive to really ever buy,” Silverman said. “So why would they be buying then? He’s sending an undervalued message.”
Ford stock has fallen roughly 7 percent this year and was trading around $11.15 per share Tuesday afternoon. Despite their 2023 decline, shares have risen about 45 percent since Farley became CEO in October 2020.
Field, who joined Ford in 2021, is responsible for a host of vehicle services, including over-the-air software updates and the technology platforms that underpin vehicles across the globe. He previously was Ford’s chief advanced technology and embedded systems officer.