Daniel F. Akerson, the newly appointed CEO of General Motors Company was the featured speaker for a breakfast meeting of the Economic Club on December 10. The good news about GM that Mr. Akerson reviewed for club members included its emergence from bankruptcy in just 39 days, the return of $23 billion of the $49.5 billion the U.S. government loaned the company, and the fact that GM once again is profitable. He also said that the company is well positioned for the future with new products coming on line, in particular GM’s new plug-in electric car, the Chevrolet Volt. He added, however, that many challenges still confront GM, especially the limits the federal government imposed on executive compensation as part of the loan agreement made with the company. Mr. Akerson expressed concern that these limitations were hampering GM’s competitive ability by risking the retention and recruitment of top talent. He told club members that he planned to meet with U.S. government officials to request “some relaxation” of the strict limitations.
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