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Posts Tagged ‘GM of Europe’

Shake-Up at Opel Continues

New CEO named as two more senior execs are ousted.

by on Jul.18, 2012

New Opel CEO Dr. Thomas Sedran.

General Motors is continuing a massive shake-up at its money-losing European operations as part of a broader turnaround plan.

The latest move puts board member Thomas Sedran in charge of Opel while two other executives with the German-based brand are being replaced.

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Sedran, who had been serving as the deputy chairman of the Opel board is a turnaround specialist who previously worked with Detroit’s AlixPartners a consulting firm that played a major role in GM’s 2009 bankruptcy. He also led the automotive competitive analysis operations for the Roland Berger consultancy.

With a PhD from Ludwig Maximilian University, Sedran replaces Karl-Friedrich Stracke as Opel’s CEO.  Stracke was yanked from that post after less than a year and will be handling “special assignments” for GM Chairman and Chief Executive Dan Akerson.


Management Shake-Up Coming to GM Europe

With maker clawing back, chief engineer Stracke taking over.

by on Nov.08, 2011

GM Europe Chief Engineer Karl-Friedrich Stracke will take over the long-troubled subsidiary in January.

General Motors will shake up its top European management as the long-troubled subsidiary finally claws its way back into the black.

In a significant move underscoring the role of product in the long-awaited turnaround, GM has named former chief engineer Karl-Friedrich Stracke to become president of GM Europe, succeeding Nick Reilly, who will be retiring.

If anything, the 61-year-old Brit will be sent off with honors after 37 years with GM.  Reilly has served as something of a turnaround specialist at GM during the course of his long career, and has been credited with significant improvements in operations including not just Europe but the former GMDAT, the Korean subsidiary recently renamed Chevrolet.

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“Nick Reilly has answered the call for GM at every turn,” said GM Chairman and CEO Dan Akerson.  “He returned to Europe and successfully led the turnaround of our operations there during one of the most tumultuous times in our company’s history.”


Fiat Now Chasing Opel

Italian makers says it wants to buy - but does GM want to sell?

by on May.04, 2009

He's got the whole world, in his least Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne would like to, and he could come a lot closer if he gets GM's Opel subsidiary, as well as a planned stake in Chrysler.

He's got the whole world, in his least Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne would like to, and he could come a lot closer if he gets GM's Opel subsidiary, as well as a planned stake in Chrysler.

Already set to gain a major stake in bankrupt U.S. automaker Chrysler LLC, the Italian “white knight,” Fiat SpA, may be riding in to sweep up another troubled automotive venture, in this case, General Motors Corp.’s European subsidiary, Opel.

Though there’d been suggestions that Fiat might want to purchase a piece of German-based Opel, which GM was willing to sell to raise some much-needed cash, it now appears that Fiat’s global-minded CEO, Sergio Marchionne, could be looking to buy Opel lock, stock and carburetor barrel.

That raises a number of questions, for one thing, whether GM would walk away from Opel entirely, and if so, how would it survive without the vast European empire it had created over the last seven decades?   What would Fiat have in mind for Opel, and how would it integrate the operation into its own automaking empire?  Perhaps most importantly, how would the heavily debt-laden Italian maker be able to afford the acquisition, considering its own financial challenges?

A new statement, issued by the Fiat Board of Directors, in Turin, confirmed “its full support for the initiative to be undertaken, over the next few weeks, by its Chief Executive Officer, Sergio Marchionne, to assess the viability of a merger of Fiat Group Automobiles (including the interest in Chrysler) and General Motors Europe into a new company.”

The deal, the board statement declared, would create a global automotive behemoth, with approximately 80 billion Euros ($106.9 billion) in annual revenues.

Earlier this year, former GM CEO Rick Wagoner announced the automaker would consider selling a large, and possibly controlling stake in Opel in return for a European government bailout that would keep the troubled operation in business.  But until now, Wagoner, his successor, Fritz Henderson and other senior General Motors executives had said they would maintain at least a major, if not controlling stake.

“We are talking to them, amongst other parties,” CEO Henderson on Monday told the Associated Press, “Not solely Fiat, but several parties who have an interest in making investment in our European business.”  (more…)