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GM Announces Restructuring Of Finance Activities

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http://media.gm.com/servlet/GatewayServlet...=74&docid=25952

FOR RELEASE: 2006-05-17

GM Announces Restructuring Of Finance Activities

DETROIT -- General Motors today announced that it plans to restructure its Corporate Controller’s Office in light of the planned retirement of its current controller, Paul W. Schmidt.

Schmidt, 61, is electing to retire from GM later this year, capping a 37-year career at GM. Following Schmidt’s retirement, GM will combine the positions of controller and chief accounting officer. The company has begun an external search for a candidate using executive recruiter Crist Associates. Schmidt will continue in his current position until a successor is named.

Chief Financial Officer Frederick “Fritz” Henderson said, “Paul has made tremendous contributions to General Motors over 37 years in the finance organization. Having worked in a number of different positions and operations throughout GM, he has been a tremendous resource to the company on a global scale. And, I’m grateful that he will continue to help GM over the next several months through this transition to a new controller and chief accounting officer.”

GM also announced today that its current chief accounting officer, Peter Bible, has elected to resign from the company to pursue other career options, effective June 1, but at the company’s request has agreed to continue to support GM during the transition period in a consulting role. “I know the entire GM family joins me in thanking Pete for his service to GM and wishing him the best as he pursues new opportunities,” said Henderson.

In addition, GM said it has retained an outside financial advisory firm, AlixPartners, to assist the corporation with a broad range of accounting, financial reporting and related matters. AlixPartners will provide personnel to support the corporation during the transition to a new controller and chief accounting officer, including assisting with assessments of the corporation's internal, financial reporting and disclosure controls and implementing steps to improve them on an ongoing basis.

“One of our key objectives in finance is to minimize risk,” said Henderson. “To that end, we are moving quickly to make sure that we have a robust level of internal controls and systems in place – and AlixPartners has tremendous expertise to support this initiative.”

General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM), the world's largest automaker, has been the global industry sales leader for 75 years. Founded in 1908, GM today employs about 327,000 people around the world. With global headquarters in Detroit , GM manufactures its cars and trucks in 33 countries. In 2005, 9.17 million GM cars and trucks were sold globally under the following brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, HUMMER, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn and Vauxhall. GM operates one of the world's leading finance companies, GMAC Financial Services, which offers automotive, residential and commercial financing and insurance. GM's OnStar subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and information services. More information on GM can be found at www.gm.com.

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“One of our key objectives in finance is to minimize risk,” said Henderson. “To that end, we are moving quickly to make sure that we have a robust level of internal controls and systems in place – and AlixPartners has tremendous expertise to support this initiative.”

I loved this quote. This is so typical "bean counter" and the reason why a good one is so important and yet why you never want one to run a company. They'll ruin it.

Finance people are all "historians." They tell you what happened. If they get too big-headed for this role, they'll bury you.

"Minimize risk." GM needs to TAKE risks... but well thought out calculated risks. No bean counter is ever going to help you with this and the fact that he made this statement should be loud and clear statements why he should go too. With all the financial BS (who ever heard of a company making a swing from a $300M loss to a $400M profit anyway?) that has gone on at GM they NEEDED to do some house cleaning. Hopefully they'll move Henderson out to pasture soon too.

Edited by ellives

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