GM Fire Sale Continues: RenCen for Sale

gm fire sale continues rencen for sale

With a conflagration raging through GM’s cash hoard, with enough debt and ongoing obligations to bury Bolivia, with its credit rating in the proverbial toilet (CCC), with the North America market fire hosing the company’s books with red ink, GM’s access to operating finance is, shall we say, “limited.” To feed the flames, GM’s already sold just about everything that’s not nailed down: subdivisions, 51 percent of captive financier GMAC, land, factories, shares in foreign automakers, etc. It’s not enough. Three months ago, GM CEO Rick Wagoner announced he’d raise $15b in cash through additional asset sales. The Detroit News reports that the company’s Renaissance Center headquarters is now on the block. “General Motors Corp. wants to borrow about $500 million from one or both of Detroit’s pension funds to refinance the Renaissance Center, the automaker’s iconic world headquarters, in a move that could pump cash into the financially strapped company’s coffers. GM officials are scheduled to make a preliminary investment pitch Thursday to the city’s Police & Fire Retirement System and are trying to schedule a meeting with the pension fund representing general city employees.” If not that, RenCen’s for sale. Does it strike you as odd that GM’s hitting-up the unions instead of banks or real estate investors? Does this have anything to do with the United Auto Workers’ forthcoming VEBA payment? Anyway, at $500m, GM’s looking at a $201m loss on the deal. In theory. “We’re not going to do it because we don’t have that kind of money,” said George Orzech, police and fire pension board member. “There’s no interest that I know of, but stranger things have happened.”

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  • Joeaverage Joeaverage on Oct 07, 2008

    So are the top level folks taking pay cuts yet or will the managementlay off the assembly line folks and assemble the cars themselves?

  • Domestic Hearse Domestic Hearse on Oct 08, 2008

    Irony of ironies...TOYOTA buys the RenCen and changes the name to the YenCen. "Ah, Mistah Wagnahsan...we have redecorated your office and moved it to the, ah, basement with the janitah. You will report to him." Seriously, if you're a fireman or cop in Detroit, do you want anyone to gamble your future with GM-owned Detroit real estate? And $500m? Heck, that's just 15 days of cash burn any more.

  • ScarecrowRepair The 1907 Panic had several causes of increased demand for money:[list][*]The semi-annual shift of money between farms and cities (to buy for planting and selling harvests)[/*][*]Britain and Germany borrowing for their naval arms race[/*][*]San Francisco reconstruction borrowing after the 1906 earthquake and fire[/*][/list]Two things made it worse:[list][*]Idiotic bans on branch banking, which prevented urban, rural, and other state branches from shifting funds to match demands. This same problem made the Great Depression far worse. Canada, which allowed branch banking, had no bank failures; the US had 9000 failures.[/*][*]Idiotic reserve requirements left over from the Civil War which prevented banks from loaning money; they eventually started honoring IOUs illegally and started the recovery.[/*][/list]Been a while since I read up on it, so I may have some of the details wrong. But it was an amazing clusterfart which could have been avoided or at least tamed sooner if states and the feds hadn't been so ham handed.
  • FreedMike Maybe this explains all the “Idiots wrecking exotic cars” YouTube videos.
  • FreedMike Good article! And I salute the author for not using the classic “Lucas - prince of darkness” trope, well earned as it may be. We all know the rap on BL cars, but on the flip side, they’re apparently pretty easy to work on (at least that’s the impression I’ve picked up). On the other hand, check the panel fits on the driver’s and passenger’s doors. Clearly, BL wasn’t much concerned with things like structural integrity when it chopped the roof off a car designed as a coupe.
  • Mongo312 Had an 89SE, 92SE and an 03SE all with stick. The 03 took almost 3 months to find because there were so few produced with a manual transmission and dealers didn't want to give them up. Ended up buying one from a dealership in San Antonio and having it shipped here to St Louis.
  • Bullnuke About 15 years before the TR-8 my brother-in-law put a 301 Chevy small block in a TR-3A. Needed a U-joint in the steering to clear the headers, a modified '59 Pontiac radiator, and a drive shaft that was basically two U-joints end-to-end. It was a scream to drive, basically a small block Chevy with 3-deuces on wheels. 142mph in the quarter - we learned that the original wire wheels were a no-go on this thing at the drags...