By on March 10, 2011

General Motors has announced that Chief Financial Officer Chris Liddell will be leaving the company on April 1, “having completed the largest public offering in history and stabilizing the company’s financial operations.” CEO Dan Akerson has denied that Liddell’s departure has anything to do with GM’s first-quarter financial performance or his relationship with the departing CFO, saying “we could finish each others sentences.” The former Microsoft man was brought into GM in January of last year, and helped guide the automaker through its IPO and eliminated its material weaknesses in internal financial controls, apparently the two tasks he needed to complete before riding off into the sunset.

Still, with GM’s powertrain boss, President of Onstar and head of Brazilian operations all leaving the company this quarter, there has been lots of turnover at the upper ranks of GM’s leadership (even considering no top-level GM executive was in their current position when the firm went through bankruptcy). But unlike those other departures, Liddell has a successor ready to go, saying

I came to General Motors to be part of something great. My objective was to help rebuild this iconic company and I am particularly pleased that through this process, we have also developed a strong successor in Dan Ammann.

Amman is currently GM’s VP for finance and Treasurer. He joined GM a year ago from Morgan Stanley, where he worked in industrial investment banking. And despite the seemingly orderly transition, GM’s stock has tumbled on the news of Liddell’s departure. Apparently the market is still coming to terms with the idea of high turnover at the automaker that people used to say could only be run by an insider. My how things change…

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7 Comments on “GM’s CFO Departs...”

  • avatar

     animals migrate to higher ground before humans react to the coming tsunami. you don’t need to be an Egyptian to read the writing on the wall. the rate of departures under Akerson increased after bonuses were distributed, some got out before it became fashionable.

    see The Buickman on FaceBook &

  • avatar

    The new guy is from Morgan Stanley, one of the prime movers behind the whole financial crisis. They were too big to fail but did fail and were bailed out with billions of taxpayer money. Then they issued even bigger bonuses and pay to their bankers. What about him would make me believe that he is capable of being CFO of an industrial company?

    • 0 avatar

      What did he do at Morgan Stanley…
      “Prior to GM, Ammann was managing director and head of Industrials Investment Banking for Morgan Stanley and was instrumental in many high profile assignments spanning a variety of technology, service, and manufacturing clients.”
      I am not sure that he was the cause of the great financial crisis we had, or that his part of the company had anything to do with it.  But, it sounds like he was working with companies that manufacture items and has been working for GM under Liddell for about a year.

  • avatar

    They bring in a 38 YO with a single year in the industry….and the stock is only down two bucks?

  • avatar

    This is like Greshams law about money . A bad company drives out good people. Who would really want to work for this cluster .  For  a riseing star talented person this could be the kiss of death for a promiseing career.

  • avatar

    When Liddell came on, he wanted to be CEO.  Since he didn’t get CEO, it was only a matter of time before he left.  I think he did a good job for his brief stint, not that I have too much to go on.  Hopefully the new guy has been groomed well.

  • avatar

    What did our $50 billion buy us? This is just a big giant mess and it’s going to come crashing right back down again. Liddell saw it and he split; so did the others. Anyone with talent or a good reputation must be looking for exit signs at RenCen.
    This is just getting started. Now we can see the IPO for what it is: nothing but a money grab by the big boys. This is their payoff for taking one for the team back in early ’09. To fill the short-term goals, they’re ramping up the incentives while Akerson starts mouthing off to the media like he’s some freakin’ genius.
    I almost hate saying it, but we should have at least listened to Ralph Nader:

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