The Charlton Group, Inc. provides superior representation and project management support for a global network of clients in North American, European and Asia Pacific markets.

Since its inception in 1978, the company is the sales liaison of choice for worldwide manufacturers that supply products for some of the world's largest automotive groups


Humble Beginnings

Working during the day as a traveling salesman for Burroughs in Detroit, and bartending at night at the Cave Bar on Warren and Mt. Elliot, Chris Charlton spent his first year out of school in 1977 trying to make ends meet and pay back his student loans. When his father, RL, saw potential in a booming automotive industry, Chris was eager to discover his niche. 

One Smart Deal Can Change Everything

In 1978 RL introduced Chris to AMG Industries, a high quality fabricator of precision metal components. With AMG's rich family history and impressive capabilities paired with Chris's aptitude for sales and desire to succeed, it was an ideal partnership. In July of 1978 the Charlton Group was formed with a sole client, AMG Industries and was secured with only a handshake. AMG and the Charlton group are still working together to this day- almost 40 years later with loyalty, trust, and great success.

Robert Leonard Charlton [1931-2009] our inspiration, leader and a friend to all.  Without his guidance our company would never exist.  This photo was taken prior to the establishment of the Charlton Group during his career in Radio.

Global Reach

Since then, the Charlton Group has expanded our global reach to five continents. We uncover new opportunities and guide clients to successful supply of vital base components for OEM automotive companies and automotive tier-level manufacturers in major markets on every continent.

Our highly skilled, well-trained sales force understands the needs of business, engineering and manufacturing. Charlton provides technical sales, program management, product quality planning, warehousing and distribution along with engineering, design, solid modeling and strategic support with new global facilities and acquisitions. Our mission is to serve our clients everywhere and in every way. 


CT Charlton

CT Charlton currently serves as the president of the Charlton Group.  Leaving a career in finance to officially join the Charlton team in 2011, CT was responsible for starting the industrial division which has been an area of steady growth and diversification across all business units.  Over the following 10 years, CT has held roles in Chicago and Seattle before moving to the Detroit area in 2020.  Under CT’s leadership, the company has grown significantly expanding heavily into connected vehicle, ADAS, and autonomy.  He has put extensive effort into growing his outstanding teams in Europe and North America, enjoying record profits each year driven by thoughtful partnerships and investing back into the businesses Charlton believes in.

CT is an avid pilot and enjoys getting up in the air for business and for pleasure.  When not in the office he can usually be found in the water or the snow and almost always with his wife and 3 kids.


Chris Charlton is the Founder of The Charlton Group.  Chris is a graduate of Michigan State University, the father of two children, and an avid sportsman, including hiking, high-level tennis, skiing, and a black belt in martial arts. He is a bible study participant, philanthropist, President of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, major benefactor of Mayo Clinic, including endowments to the Charlton Building at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, a member of the Visiting Committee of the Michigan Center for Theoretical Physics and political/international trade and commerce advocate.

Executive Advisory Team

Franz Linner started his career with Siemens Semiconductors, then held various positions at the BMW Group (33 years), from in-house production over-engineering and most recently, Senior Vice President Supplier Network Americas. He is an energetic achiever who leads strategic market launches and accelerates global supplier developments for international success. Franz is married and has two children. He joined the Charlton Group in August 2018 as an executive Technology Advisor.

deepak nagaraja

Deepak Nagaraja has held various positions at Magna, most recently Vice President Global Purchasing and Supply Chain, and Represented Magna on many JV boards.  Prior to Magna Deepak worked with Ford, Boeing, and Allied Signal Aerospace. Deepak holds a B.E. in Mechanical Engineering and M.S. in Mechanical Engineering.

heinz preissler

Heinz Preissler joined BMW in 1969 and held various positions most recently President and CEO of BMW-Brilliance China.  Mr. Preissler was a member of the Board of Directors of the German Chinese Chamber of Commerce in Beijing as well as a member of the Board of Directors of the German Chamber of Industry and Commerce in China.

Tonya Krause

Tonya Krause is a Vice President in the automotive division based in Detroit.  She has worked in the automotive industry for the past 20 years, previously with BASF Heavy Duty Diesel and JCI Seating.  She is married with two boys and enjoys spending time with her family.

Kevin Fromm

Kevin Fromm is a Vice President in the industrial division handling the Chicago and North Carolina markets. Kevin has a degree in electrical engineering and a masters in business.  Kevin is married with two children, enjoys sports, including soccer, golf and running, he also paints, reads and does volunteer work with church and his community.

Shusaku Maruko

Shusaku Maruko is the President of Charlton Asia.  Shusaku's background includes serving as an engineer at Sony Corporation, Etak Inc., a board member of FeliCa and most recently serving as executive director and board member of U-shin Ltd.  He is married with a son, and enjoys sports, especially running marathons.



Our offices are strategically located on 4 continents next to every major manufacturer.  We are constantly adding new staff and entering new markets.  If there is a location you need that isn't listed above, just ask.  Odds are we already have something in the works.

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