Detroit Bureau on Twitter

Archive for the ‘Financials’ Category

Bill Ford Leads Exodus from Saudi Economic Event in Response to Alleged Murder of Journalist

Global business, political and media leaders demand answers in disappearance.

by on Oct.15, 2018

Ford Chairman Bill Ford is shown during a celebration of the 100th anniversary of the carmaker's River Rouge manufacturing complex.

Bill Ford, the chairman of Ford Motor Co., is leading an exodus of high-profile business leaders who have decided to pull out for an upcoming investor conference sponsored by Saudi Arabia.

The move comes amidst growing concerns about the fate of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who reportedly entered the Saudi consultate in Istanbul, Turkey last week but failed to leave it, raising concerns he may have been murdered by hit men dispatched by Saudi leaders.

Global News!

Khashoggi was a regular contributor to a number of publications, including the Washington Post, and had been granted U.S residency. Reports have surfaced over the last several days indicating American intelligence officials may have had advance warning that Khashoggi faced threats from the Saudis. Turkish officials, meanwhile, claim to have evidence the journalist was murdered in the embassy, his remains subsequently being smuggled out.

(more…)

Update: Musk Calls “Incorrect” Reports Murdoch Will Replace Him as Tesla CEO

Hunt continues with clock ticking under SEC settlement.

by on Oct.11, 2018

Elon Musk appears to have ruled out reports suggesting James Murdoch will replace him as Tesla Chairman.

Fox CEO and Tesla board member James Murdoch is apparently out as a prospect to replace Elon Musk as the battery-carmaker’s chairman.

Musk, who must relinquish the post as part of a settlement with the SEC, issued a Wednesday afternoon tweet declaring “incorrect” a report in the Financial Times that cited two supposed inside sources naming Murdoch as the frontrunner in the search. The FT story came days after several other media outlets also pointed to Murdoch as the likely successor.

Dig Deeper!

The 45-year-old Murdoch is a friend of the Tesla founder and boss and has been on the company’s board since last year. He was seen as a particularly suitable replacement for Musk as he will soon relinquish his role as CEO of Twenty-First Century Fox, the media conglomerate founded by his father Rupert Murdoch, after it sells off most of its assets to Disney.

(more…)

Faraday Fritters Away Funding, Future Fading Fast — Again

Company not paying vendors while fighting with investor.

by on Oct.08, 2018

More than 300 Faraday workers gathered at the plant last weekend to help clean it up.

Less than a year after it was rumored to be out of money, budding electric vehicle maker Faraday Future appears to be out of money again — even after getting an $800 million infusion from a Chinese conglomerate.

According to a filing with Hong Kong Stock Exchange, the healthcare division of Chinese real estate group Evergrande is accusing Faraday Future founder and CEO Jia Yueting of trying to back out of the deal the two sides made in January.

News Now!

Evergrande officials claim that Jia blew through the $800 million and wanted another $700 million, and say they will take “all necessary actions” to protect itself and its shareholders. Conversely, Jia claims the company agreed to make two payments and after making the first, is trying to get out of the second, a $700 million payment due in 2019. (more…)

Ford Redesigning Company Structure, Salaried Job Cuts Coming in ’19

Number of white collar jobs to be shed unknown right now.

by on Oct.05, 2018

Ford CEO Jim Hackett has talked about a turnaround at the automaker and now it looks like it's happening.

Ford Motor Co. CEO Jim Hackett has talked about making the automaker a more “fit” company going forward, and now it’s clear what that means: salaried job cuts.

The automaker is “redesigning” its white collar workforce to be leaner, have few layers and offer the remaining employees more power to make decisions, and implement those decisions more quickly.

The Last Word!

Currently, Ford employs 70,000 salaried workers, among its more than 285,000 overall employees worldwide. Of that total, about 85,000 work in the U.S. The number of jobs that will be cut is unknown at this point as the plan is still be formulated. (more…)

Toyota Recalls 2.4 Million Priuses Worldwide; 807K in US

Second time for this repair.

by on Oct.05, 2018

The Toyota Prius has been recalled due to a problem with stalling.

Toyota is recalling 2.4 million Prius hybrids worldwide – including 807,000 in the U.S. – that could stall while driving.

The Japanese automaker said the action covers certain 2010 to 2014 Prius hybrids and certain 2012 to 2014 Prius V hybrids. The problem stems from the vehicle failing to move into “fail-safe driving mode” when the car’s hybrid system “faults.”

News Now!

While it issue happens rarely, “the vehicle could lose power and stall. While power steering and braking would remain operational, a vehicle stall while driving at higher speeds could increase the risk of a crash.” (more…)

Audi CEO Rupert Stadler Now Out of Job and Still in Jail

Ousted exec “wishes to concentrate on his defense.”

by on Oct.03, 2018

Audi's Board of Management Chairman Rupert Stadler has been fired and remains in jail on charges related to dieselgate.

During any other year, Audi CEO Rupert Stadler would have been a notable presence at the Paris Auto Show where the brand formally introduced to the public this week its new e-tron battery-electric vehicle. But Stadler was a no-show because he remains in a German jail where he has been locked up since June in connection with VW’s diesel emissions scandal.

And even if he eventually beats the charges he now faces, Stadler will have to go looking for a new job. About the same time Audi was revealing the e-tron in Paris, the Volkswagen Group announced that it was terminating Stadler, effective immediately.

Subscribe Now!

In a statement, the company said they had reached “an agreement with Rupert Stadler on the termination,” adding that “Due to his ongoing pretrial detention, he is unable to fulfill his duties as a member of the board of management and wishes to concentrate on his defense.” (more…)

Future of Alliance with Nissan/Renault the Big Question as Zetsche Prepares to End Role as Daimler CEO

Zetche and Nissan/Renault’s Ghosn insist there is more to come during Paris new conference.

by on Oct.03, 2018

Zetsche and Ghosn first met when the German exec was working at Freightliner and the Brazilian-born Ghosn worked for Michelin.

Since launching the first in a broad series of joint ventures nine years ago, Daimler AG and the Nissan/Renault/Mitsubishi Alliance have generated what they claim to be billions of dollars in “synergies” that have allowed them to expand their product lines and grow into new markets.

But in recent months, the future of that partnership has come under question. The last major new project was announced three years ago. And now, with Daimler Chief Executive Dieter Zetsche planning to relinquish the CEO title next year, that has raised new questions about whether his successor, Ola Kallenius, would keep the alliance going.

Subscribe Now!

“Without the chemistry between us, maybe this wouldn’t have happened,” said Zetsche, during a joint news conference with Nissan/Renault/Mitsubishi Alliance chief Carlos Ghosn. But considering the results the partnership has generated, “I don’t see from my perspective why the momentum in this relationship should change.”

(more…)

Ford’s Rouge Complex Gets New Product Line to Celebrate Centennial

“What was once dismissed as a Rust Belt relic has become relevant all over again.”

by on Sep.27, 2018

The Rouge plant produces a new F-Series pickup, on average, every 53 seconds.

Ford Motor Co. will launch production of an all-new hybrid version of its F-150 pickup for the 2020 model-year at its sprawling River Rouge Complex near Detroit.

The announcement came at a day-long event called to celebrate the centennial of what was once hailed as the “American alter to the new god of mass production.” Commonly known as “The Rouge,” it was the brainchild of company founder Henry Ford and, for many years, the largest automotive manufacturing center in the world, renowned for its ability to take raw materials off ships and railroad cars at one end and spew out completed cars and trucks at the other.

http://www.thedetroitbureau.com/about/subscribe

Product News!

Today, the Rouge has been somewhat downsized, some of its original operations closed, while others, such as its steel plant, have been sold off. But with 93 buildings covering a roughly 1.5 square-mile campus, its own docks and 100 miles of railroad track weaving through the complex, the Rouge remains one of the industry’s largest automotive manufacturing centers. And it is the primary production site for Ford’s various F-Series pickups which have, for decades, collectively been the country’s best-selling automotive product line.

(more…)

FCA Readying for Ratings Upgrade from Moody’s

Agency assigns automaker a "positive outlook."

by on Sep.26, 2018

Fiat Chrysler's future finances were given a positive outlook by Moody's.

Moody’s Ratings has given a “positive outlook” to Fiat Chrysler Automobiles based on its expectation the automaker will continue to improve its overall financial position.

Continuing improvement in FCA’s financial “metrics” in the current fiscal year to help trigger a possible upgrade from the ratings agency to Ba1. FCA’s current rating is considered investment grade but the upgrade would help lower the interest rates the company pays on the money it needs to borrow for continuing business operations.

News Now!

“The positive outlook also assumes that FCA’s financial policy is to remain conservative with no excessive dividend payouts, a more moderate gross leverage than in the past, a solid liquidity profile and some operational resilience in case of a weakening of FCA’s markets,” reads the Moody’s report. (more…)

BMW Cuts Earnings Outlook for 2018

Mobility investments and currency fluctuations hurting bottom line.

by on Sep.25, 2018

BMW CEO Harald Krueger said the company's 2018 financial results will be impacted negatively by investments in mobility programs and currency fluctuations.

The BMW Group cut its guidance for the current financial year, noting it had expected 2018 to be a challenging year, due in part to additional upfront investments of around one billion euros on mobility programs that will mature in future years.

In addition, currency headwinds in the mid-to-high three-digit million-euro range compared with 2017 will negatively impact the company’s bottom line, BMW said in its update to investors.

Global News!

In the Automotive Segment, revenues are now forecast to be slightly lower than the previous year, compared with the previous expectation of slight year-on-year increase. (more…)