GM Board of Directors on Chrysler Hook-Up: Are You Nuts?
According to [yet more] unnamed sources for The Wall Street Journal, General Motors’ Board of Bystanders put the kibosh on a Chrysler merger deal. “Despite huge losses over the past four years, a plunge in GM’s stock price and growing worries about whether the auto maker has enough cash to turn itself around, GM’s board has continued to support Chairman and Chief Executive Rick Wagoner.” Nice set-up. “But the board’s cautious reaction to the proposed merger suggests it may assert itself more than in the past if Mr. Wagoner and his team try to move ahead with a Chrysler deal.” You would think that in times like this the board would be asserting its authority in, I dunno, setting the strategic direction for the company, rather than, say, simply reacting to the latest thoughts of the CEO whose wiped tens of billions off the company’s worth and plunged it into a terminal nosedive. But then again, reacting instead of leading is the GM way from top to bottom. Anyway, as that’s that, let’s hear what AutoNation’s CEO Michael “No Not That One” Jackson has to say about all this meshugas. Jump!
When it comes to the 2.8’s overall position in the marketplace, Michael Jackson said GM, Ford and Chrysler are “not going to dominate in the U.S. and elsewhere in the world as they have in the past, and they’ll have to find a piece of the pie where they can be successful and profitable.” In other words, Detroit’s former lions are all shrinking and the game of musical chairs continues. But as you made the jump, and probably already knew that, how about this, buried at the bottom. “In an effort to boost Ford’s liquidity, its board has approved the sale of at least part of Ford’s controlling stake in Mazda Motor Co., according to several people briefed on the matter [unnamed sources rule!]. “Selling some of it 33.4 per cent stake in Mazda is viewed as an attractive option for Ford because unlike some assets, the stake wasn’t used as collateral when the auto maker secured $US24 billion in financing two years ago.” Huh.
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