Chrysler Is Now Owned By Cerberus

Signed, sealed, delivered…

By Brendan Moore

08.03.2007

Cerberus is the new legal majority owner of Chrysler as of this morning. It is a done deal. Cerberus has 80.1% of Chrysler, and DaimlerChrysler (soon to be Daimler) retained 19.9% of the new Chrysler.

The 1998 deal that brought Chrysler into Daimler’s arms is officially unwound, with lots of anguish along the way.

Chrysler plans a party on August 6 at its corporate headquarters in Auburn Hills, Michigan to mark the occasion.

For your reading enjoyment, the official press release from DaimlerChrysler:

PRESS RELEASE: DaimlerChrysler Closes Transaction on Transfer of Majority Interest in Chrysler to Cerberus

— Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of DaimlerChrysler AG and Head of Mercedes Car Group: “Today marks a new chapter in the history of our company.”– Extraordinary Shareholders’ Meeting to decide on change of name on October 4, 2007STUTTGART, Germany

— DaimlerChrysler today completed the closing for the transfer of a majority interest in the Chrysler Group and for the related financial services business in NAFTA to a subsidiary of Cerberus Capital Management, L.P., a private- equity company based in New York. A subsidiary of Cerberus takes over 80.1% in the Chrysler Holding LLC, while DaimlerChrysler retains a 19.9% interest, as announced in May 2007.

The effects on the financial statements of DaimlerChrysler will be explained on August 29, 2007.

Basically, the conditions of the transaction and the economic effects have not changed since the agreement was signed on May 14, 2007. Furthermore, DaimlerChrysler and Cerberus have agreed to support the financing of the majority takeover of Chrysler by Cerberus in light of highly volatile US loan markets. Both companies will subscribe $2 billion of second lien debt for Chrysler’s automotive business, to be drawn within 12 months. DaimlerChrysler’s portion will be $1.5 billion. The debt will be priced at market conditions. One year after the closing, DaimlerChrysler has the right to sell this loan in the credit market. The maturity of this loan is 7 years.

DaimlerChrysler’s financing support is a strong sign of its overall determination to make sure that, under the majority of Cerberus, Chrysler has a good start as a successful stand-alone car company.

As of today, the Board of Management of DaimlerChrysler AG is reduced to six members: Tom LaSorda, Eric Ridenour and Tom Sidlik are no longer members. Within the Board of Management, Bodo Uebber additionally assumes responsibility for procurement.

Due to the new corporate structure, DaimlerChrysler AG is to be renamed as Daimler AG. The shareholders are to decide on this change at an Extraordinary Shareholders’ Meeting in Berlin on October 4, 2007.

Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of DaimlerChrysler AG and Head of the Mercedes Car Group: “Today marks a new chapter in the history of our company. Based on the clearly defined strategies in our Mercedes Car Group, Truck Group, Financial Services business divisions and for vans and buses, and our company’s healthy balance sheet, we have every reason to move confidently into the future.”

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Author: Brendan Moore

Brendan Moore is a Principal Consultant with Cedar Point Consulting , a management consulting practice based in the Washington, DC area. He also manages Autosavant Consulting, a separate practice within Cedar Point Consulting. where he advises businesses connected to the auto industry. Cedar Point Consulting can be found at http://www.cedarpointconsulting.com.

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3 Comments

  1. And DaimlerChrysler is giving Cerberus EVEN MORE money to to get the deal done. Man, they must have wanted Chrysler to go away something fierce.

  2. Daimler will do much better without Chrysler, but I think Chrysler is done, stick a fork in it.

  3. See, I think Chrysler will do very well without the Germans, and without the pressure of stock earnings. They’re going to really take off in the next couple of years.

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