Daikin Industries, Ltd. has announced that Jeff Drees has been selected as the new chief executive officer and president of Daikin Applied Americas. Drees currently serves as executive vice president of sales, marketing and aftermarket at Daikin Applied, and will replace Mike Schwartz who is retiring at the end of August after 11 years leading the organization.
"This is an exciting time to be in the HVAC and building solutions industry," Drees said. "The work we do has a profound impact on the world at large, helping customers address issues such as reducing carbon emissions and improving indoor air quality. I'm honored to lead these efforts and add to the significant growth the business has experienced over the last decade."
Daikin Applied designs and delivers innovative heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) technology that not only offers superior comfort, but helps provide healthy, safe and sustainable environments. Its offerings include equipment, service, controls and systems integration for commercial and industrial facilities, encompassing the full customer lifecycle.
Drees joined Daikin Applied in 2020 and has helmed the organization's solutions transformation, expanding the portfolio of offerings and adding new capabilities through key acquisitions. He is a staunch advocate for customers, as well as Daikin's sales representatives and employees.
"Jeff's leadership is critical to developing the strategy, plan and portfolio required to meet local and global challenges — air quality, decarbonization, digitalization," said Hirokazu Hirao, director of Daikin's Applied Solution Business Division, which includes Daikin Applied. "He is uniquely qualified to shape this organization to solve our customers' problems and help us attain the top position in North America."
Drees came to Daikin with experience in commercial engineering and operations. He held executive positions in private equity, as well as serving in significant business unit roles at Flowserve and Schneider Electric. He started his career in the United States Air Force, and holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Southern Illinois University and an MBA from Aurora University.