Cerberus officially takes over majority holding, installs unexpected new CEO
6 August 2007

Canadian investment group Cerberus Capital Management officially became the owner of Chrysler on Friday (3 August).The transaction had been under question as recently as two weeks ago, as Cerberus struggled to secure the funding it needed.With funding arranged, Cerberus now owns 80.1 per cent of Chrysler – now officially known as Chrysler Holding LLC. Former parent Daimler (it plans to rename itself Daimler AG, though this will not be confirmed until October) retains the other 19.9 per cent of Chrysler.DaimlerChrysler boss Dieter Zetsche said: “Today marks a new chapter in the history of our company. We have every reason to move confidently into the future.”It obviously also marked a new chapter in Chrysler's history, and the firm is expected to name an unexpected new chairman today (6 August).That new chairman and CEO is almost certain to be Bob Nardelli. Fifty-nine-year-old Nardelli was previously in head of US DIY chain Home Depot, from which he resigned in January 2007.It's a surprise move, as former Chrysler boss Wolfgang Bernhard was widely expected to take the job, though he has apparently declined 'for personal reasons'.Existing Chrysler CEO Tom LaSorda will remain at Chrysler as vice chairman and president."Bob [Nardelli] has a proven track record of success and an unwavering focus on performance, and brings deep operational experience and a broad industry background to Chrysler," said LaSorda. "His background in operations will provide valuable knowledge as we continue Chrysler's turnaround."Nardelli's retail experience is likely to prove especially useful to Chrysler's dealer network. But no matter what success Nardelli can achieve on forecourts, Chrysler still needs to implement its restructuring plan, which calls for the loss of 13,000 jobs by 2009.Chrysler is also reverting to its traditional 'Pentastar' logo.

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