2023 Author: Eric Donovan | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-21 15:44
Dieter Zetsche received an interesting letter from the USA. Billionaire Kirk Kerkorian offers the DaimlerChrysler boss a deal - and shows himself to be an old-school businessman.
For the ailing US subsidiary of the car manufacturer DaimlerChrysler
a first offer is on the table: The American billionaire Kirk Kerkorian has officially expressed interest. In a letter to DaimlerChrysler boss Dieter Zetsche, an offer of 4.5 billion US dollars in cash was promised, Kerkorian's investment firm Tracinda announced on Thursday in New York. At the annual general meeting on Wednesday, Zetsche confirmed discussions with interested parties for the first time and thus fed expectations about the sale of the US subsidiary.
Five years of renovation planned
DaimlerChrysler declined to comment on Kerkorian's announcement on Thursday evening. "We do not comment on this," said a spokesman. He assured that the Stuttgart company would continue to keep all options open. The Canadian supplier Magna and the financial investors Cerberus and Blackstone are also considered to be interested in Chrysler. In media reports there was talk of offers of up to $ 9 billion for Chrysler. At the annual general meeting on Wednesday, Zetsche confirmed discussions with interested parties for the first time and thus fed expectations about the sale of the US subsidiary.
Kerkorian wants Chrysler management and the United Auto Workers Union (UAW) to participate in the takeover. However, new collective bargaining agreements with the UAW are necessary in order to overcome the problems of escalating health insurance costs and huge pension burdens.
Product range and "green offers"
It is best if Chrysler is run as a private company and not listed on the stock exchange, the letter said. A renovation of the car manufacturer is not possible within a short time. It would take five to seven years to make Chrysler competitive again. For example, the product range must be completely renewed and expanded to include “green” offers. Improvements in quality are also necessary in order to win back customers.
Tracinda wants the exclusive right to an in-depth company audit (“due diligence”). This could be completed within 60 days. DaimlerChrysler would achieve an attractive price if sold, it said.
According to its own statements, Tracinda has been involved in Chrysler and today's DaimlerChrysler AG for more than ten years. Kerkorian sued DaimlerChrysler at the end of 2000. He was disadvantaged because the alleged merger of equals in 1998 was a takeover. A US court dismissed the lawsuit. (dpa)