Bailout Watch 242: GM CFO is Good To Go!

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago

You know you’ve got trouble when your company’s having a very public congressional colonoscopy and the first question your in-house PR team throws at the Chief Financial Officer is “Why are you confident GM has vehicles the public wants to buy?” Uh, guys? Ray’s a beancounter. You know, accountant? Like Rick. And Fritz. If you want someone to explain why our cars are so wicked pissa talk to Bob Lutz. Oh wait. OK. Carry on. (BTW: Did GM hire Bill O’Reilly to teach Ray how to gesture? If so, it didn’t work.) After his warm-up, Ray tells the faithful that GM has done a lot to restructure over the years. In fact, if I hear that one more time, I will finally surrender my grip on reality and equate GM’s failed attempts to rectify all its other failed attempts at “right-sizing” the company as akin to saving fresh-faced orphans from members of the Man Boy Love Association. BTW. Do you want to know why GM is doomed? Because Ray Young honestly believes GM now has a focused branding strategy, bolstered by brand-new “incremental actions,” which will speed-up GM’s previous [targetless] turrnaround plan. Which was going great before GMAC Wall Street screwed-up the U.S. economy. Or so I hear.

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  • Adub Adub on Dec 04, 2008

    I think we should post a link to William Hung of American Idol in tribute.

  • Robert Schwartz Robert Schwartz on Dec 04, 2008

    And GM wants to keep GMC alive so that they can maintain the distinction between professional grade and built like a rock?

  • IOtheworldaliving IOtheworldaliving on Dec 04, 2008

    Another marketing failure. They should have had a comely PR lady sitting across from him doing the interviewing, rather than the power-point slide business. BS, certainly, but par for the course these days definitely an improvement. I was in for a minute--about half of that spent thinking about how his shoulders look like Mister Rogers's. @Adub: That's not fair to Hung, he was never in denial about his musical talent. Link instead to that Carly woman with the tattoos, who (before AI) got a $2.2m record deal and sold less than 400 albums. (I can't remember her last name, nor can I summon the energy to search for it.) Speaking of AI, I want to know what how the Ford sponsorship will be affected if they get a taxpayer loan...

  • Ronin Ronin on Dec 05, 2008

    I don't see anything wrong with his presentation, other than the random gestures unconnected with the words. On the other hand, I do expect a CFO to have a very good finger on the pulse of a business. They have to know where the money is coming from to finance ongoing operations. This money can come from raising capital (selling GM stock). No, that's out. It can come from raising debt (selling GM bonds or bank borrowing). No, that's out. It can come from product revenue. Strike three. Since a going concern MUST generate revenue from its operations if it is to be anything more than a welfare queen, he should be asking why they are making but no one is buying. He should be asking why in recent years red tag sales have coincided with sales increases. Then he should conclude that the price they set for their products is higher than the market can bear, and then lower them accordingly. I mean, he is the bean guy?