Sergio Marchionne sent Mary Barra a detailed email in the middle of March in an effort to start merger talks. Barra, CEO of General Motors, was uninterested in the offer and rebuffed Marchionne, CEO of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles.
It was the first time the two executives hadÂ ever spoken, but it wouldn’t be the last Barra would hear of Marchionne’s merger desires.
That’s the story being told by the New York Times today, detailing the lengths to which Marchionne is going to trigger consolidation within the automotive industry.
DuringÂ a routine analyst conference call on April 29, Marchionne broughtÂ his pleaÂ to other executives through the mediaÂ with a 25-page PowerPoint presentation.
â€œI think it is absolutely clear that the amount of capital waste thatâ€™s going on in this industry is something that certainly requires remedy. A remedy in our view is through consolidation,â€� Marchionne said.
Marchionne’s overture of a merger with GM includes no less than 14 brands between North America and Europe, not includingÂ the many other brands each company markets in China and other emerging regions. But, to date, the overture has been played toÂ an audience wearing earplugs.
Even with the vast number of brands, that isn’t what bothersÂ Marchionne. Instead, it’s the amount of money poured into redundant RD work that could be shared by multiple automakers.
â€œItâ€™s fundamentally immoral to allow for that waste to continue unchecked,â€� he said.[Source: New York Times]