Daimler Does Diligence

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

This one’s a bit of a golden oldie, but in light of the recent round of promotions at the Haus of Daimler (not to mention this video’s unintentionally prophetic tagline), it’s worth mentioning. Charges in the 6 year old SEC-DOJ investigations of what was then DaimlerChrysler may be settled by Daimler for “about $200 million” according to anonymous Bloomberg [via BusinessWeek] sources. The probe had looked into allegations that the German firm regularly bribed government officials in a number of jurisdictions (including Sadaam Hussein, in the Oil For Food scandal), the broad strokes of which the firm essentially admitted in 2005. Though Daimler announced that it would cooperate with investigators and that “several” employees were fired, details were never released. At least one whistleblower has alleged that knowledge of slush funds and bribery were known at the highest ranks in Daimler, and the ever-helpful NY Times notes that

As recently as 1997, the German government counted the bribes paid to foreigners by German companies as tax- deductible.

No wonder these guys promote from inside.

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

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  • Sabast20 Sabast20 on Feb 17, 2010

    What about the other crime Daimler committed... Namely the rape and pillage of the Chrysler Corporation.

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    • Disaster Disaster on Feb 18, 2010

      Other than Jeep...which wasn't aging well, Daimler got nothing from Chrysler. Their donation of the E-series platform, (in the form of the 300/Magnum/Charger) was the only thing that kept Chrysler in the game. The acquisition of Chrylser, by Daimler, will go down in their annals, like Ford's acquisition of Jaquar. Both were huge money sucking pits. Both would never have continued on without the charity/capital of their new owners.

  • Accs Accs on Feb 18, 2010

    Nice video... But I can just imagine if the car companies were people at Xmas dinner... the fights that they'd be having Damn. A Liberty and a PT Loser along side a S600, a Freightliner and a SMART Fortwo. What a mess. Did someone mention Dillinger, where is Buickman?

  • Porschespeed Porschespeed on Feb 18, 2010

    A major corporation pays bribes. This is a surprise to anyone? Really? Every culture and country has it's own method of 'greasing the wheels'. Sometimes its just this side of the official system - say, Mexico or Russia or the Teamsters. Sometimes it's a bit more insidious, say like the US, where you make a 'political contribution' and buy access to your new congressman/'friend'. (Or if dealing with a city government, you pay a "consultant" a decent little 4/5 figure sum, and amazingly enough, things get done.) Ideal? Nope. Is it the way business has gotten done since the dawn of business and government? You betcha. Will it ever change? Not as long as humans are alive. (OK, animals do it too...)

  • Jimboy Jimboy on Feb 19, 2010

    Actually, what Daimler got from the Chrysler takeover was 36 billion to re-design and re-engineer the Mercedes Benz divisions' line-up, which was crap at the time. In return, Mercedes donated that same crap to Chrysler, forcing them to try to re-engineer it instead of using their already developed product, which was probably better, and was subsequently scrapped along with all of its development money. That left Chrysler with nothing to develop new product in the mid and small size range, resulting in the current Sebring/Avenger twins. Then Daimler threw them into the street with their pants around their ankles. Daimler AG has been an ethically challenged company since the 1930's, and people should not support their business, period.