Thomas William LaSorda, (born July 24, 1954, in Windsor, Ontario, Canada) is a Canadian-American automobile industry executive who served as CEO and President of the Chrysler Group. In December 2011, he joined the board of Fisker Automotive and assumed the role of CEO until his resignation in August 2012.
Windsor is a city in Ontario and the southernmost city in Canada. It is on the southern shore of the Detroit River, due south and directly across the river from Detroit, Michigan. Windsor is a major contributor to Canada's automotive industry and has a storied history and a diverse culture. Known as the "Automotive Capital of Canada", Windsor's industrial and manufacturing heritage is responsible for how the city has developed through the years.
Ontario is one of the 13 provinces and territories of Canada and is located in east-central Canada. It is Canada's most populous province accounting for 38.3 percent of the country's population, and is the second-largest province in total area. Ontario is fourth-largest in total area when the territories of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut are included. It is home to the nation's capital city, Ottawa, and the nation's most populous city, Toronto, which is also Ontario's provincial capital.
Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometres, making it the world's second-largest country by total area. Canada's southern border with the United States is the world's longest bi-national land border. Its capital is Ottawa, and its three largest metropolitan areas are Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver. As a whole, Canada is sparsely populated, the majority of its land area being dominated by forest and tundra. Consequently, its population is highly urbanized, with over 80 percent of its inhabitants concentrated in large and medium-sized cities, many near the southern border. Canada's climate varies widely across its vast area, ranging from arctic weather in the north, to hot summers in the southern regions, with four distinct seasons.
Tom LaSorda is the third generation of his family to work for Chrysler, being the son of a CAW union local president. He graduated from the University of Windsor in 1977 with a dual degree (Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Commerce), and earned an MBA in 1980. He is married with two daughters, and lives in Birmingham, Michigan.
The University of Windsor is a public comprehensive and research university in Windsor, Ontario, Canada. It is Canada's southernmost university. It has approximately 12,000 full-time and part-time undergraduate students and over 3,000 graduate students. Founded in 1963, the University of Windsor has graduated more than 100,000 alumni.
A Bachelor of Arts is a bachelor's degree awarded for an undergraduate course or program in either the liberal arts, sciences, or both. Bachelor of Arts programs generally take three to four years depending on the country, institution, and specific specializations, majors, or minors. The word baccalaureus should not be confused with baccalaureatus, which refers to the one- to two-year postgraduate Bachelor of Arts with Honors degree in some countries.
A Bachelor of Commerce is an undergraduate degree in commerce and related subjects, usually awarded in Canada, Australia, India, Ireland, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Africa and other Commonwealth countries; however, the degree is no longer offered in the United Kingdom.
In 1977, he joined General Motors, working chiefly in manufacturing. He helped to launch the GM-Suzuki joint venture plant, CAMI Automotive, in Ingersoll, Ontario, and he also served as president of Opel's Eisenach plant in eastern Germany.
General Motors Company, commonly referred to as General Motors (GM), is an American multinational corporation headquartered in Detroit that designs, manufactures, markets, and distributes vehicles and vehicle parts, and sells financial services, with global headquarters in Detroit's Renaissance Center. It was originally founded by William C. Durant on September 16, 1908 as a holding company. The company is the largest American automobile manufacturer, and one of the world's largest. As of 2018, General Motors is ranked #10 on the Fortune 500 rankings of the largest United States corporations by total revenue.
CAMI Automotive is wholly owned by General Motors Canada. The plant occupies 570 acres (230 ha) and has 1,700,000 square feet (157,900 m2) of floor space of which 400,000 square feet (37,161 m2) was added in 2016 as part of a $560 million investment.
Ingersoll is a town in Oxford County on the Thames River in southwestern Ontario, Canada. The nearest cities are Woodstock to the east and London to the west.
In 2000, he joined the Chrysler Group as a senior vice president. He was first appointed to the board of Daimler in 2004 when he became chief operating officer. He was the architect of Chrysler's Toledo Supplier Park in Ohio, which integrated suppliers in a close relationship with Chrysler to produce the Jeep Wrangler.
The chief operating officer (COO), also called the chief operations officer, is one of the highest-ranking executive positions in an organization, comprising part of the "C-Suite". The COO is responsible for the daily operation of the company, and routinely reports to the highest-ranking executive, usually the chief executive officer (CEO).
Ohio is a Midwestern state in the Great Lakes region of the United States. Of the fifty states, it is the 34th largest by area, the seventh most populous, and the tenth most densely populated. The state's capital and largest city is Columbus.
The Jeep Wrangler is a series of compact and mid-size four-wheel drive off-road SUVs, manufactured by Jeep since 1986, and currently in its fourth generation. The Wrangler JL was unveiled in late 2017 and will be produced at Jeep's Toledo Complex.
On January 1, 2006, LaSorda succeeded Dieter Zetsche, a German from the parent company DaimlerChrysler (now Daimler AG), as Chrysler's CEO, as Zetsche was promoted to chief executive of DaimlerChrysler Group as a reward for the turnaround of Chrysler. That same year, LaSorda became a U.S. citizen, while retaining his Canadian citizenship.
Dieter Zetsche is a German engineer and the Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars since 2006 as well as member of the company's Board since 1998.
Daimler AG is a German multinational automotive corporation, headquartered in Stuttgart, Baden-Württemberg. Daimler-Benz was formed with the merger of Benz & Cie and Daimler Motoren Gesellschaft in 1926. The company was renamed DaimlerChrysler upon acquiring the American automobile manufacturer Chrysler Corporation in 1998, and was again renamed Daimler upon divesting of Chrysler in 2007.
On August 5, 2007, the demerger of Daimler and Chrysler occurred, with the latter being 80% purchased by Cerberus Capital Management. In the resulting management shuffle, LaSorda agreed to assume the position as president and vice chairman of Chrysler LLC,with Bob Nardelli succeeding him as chairman and chief executive officer. Despite the appointment of a second vice chairman, Jim Press, LaSorda stayed on.
Cerberus Capital Management, L.P. is an American private equity firm, specializing in "distressed investing". The firm is based in New York City, and run by Steve Feinberg, who co-founded Cerberus in 1992 with William L. Richter, who currently serves as a senior managing director. The firm has affiliate and/or advisory offices in the United States, Europe and Asia.
The chairman is the highest officer of an organized group such as a board, a committee, or a deliberative assembly. The person holding the office is typically elected or appointed by the members of the group, and the chairman presides over meetings of the assembled group and conducts its business in an orderly fashion.
The chief executive officer (CEO), or just chief executive (CE), is the most senior corporate, executive, or administrative officer in charge of managing an organization – especially an independent legal entity such as a company or nonprofit institution. CEOs lead a range of organizations, including public and private corporations, non-profit organizations and even some government organizations. The CEO of a corporation or company typically reports to the board of directors and is charged with maximizing the value of the entity, which may include maximizing the share price, market share, revenues, or another element. In the non-profit and government sector, CEOs typically aim at achieving outcomes related to the organization's mission, such as reducing poverty, increasing literacy, etc.
His titles at Chrysler LLC officially stated that he was in charge of manufacturing, procurement, and supply, employee relations, global business development, and alliances since August 2007. Despite his expertise in manufacturing, however, LaSorda's new role in the company was largely to find a new partner or buyer for Chrysler, leading to speculation that Cerberus Capital was less interested in rebuilding the auto manufacturer than it was to turning profit though a leveraged buyout.
Of the many auto companies that LaSorda contacted, only Fiat agreed to a partnership. LaSorda counts current Fiat/Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne, also Canadian-raised and -educated, as a close friend.
While Fiat asked LaSorda to stay on, he instead opted to step down as president and vice chairman and retired effective May 1, 2009, as Chrysler LLC filed for bankruptcy.LaSorda and Manoj Bhargava launched Stage 2 Innovations in May 2011 . Stage 2 Innovations is a venture capital firm located in Farmington Hills, Michigan.
Chrysler is one of the "Big Three" automobile manufacturers in the United States, headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan. The original Chrysler Corporation was founded in 1925 by Walter Chrysler from the remains of the Maxwell Motor Company. In 1998, it was acquired by Daimler-Benz, and the holding company was renamed DaimlerChrysler. After Daimler divested Chrysler in 2007, the company existed as Chrysler LLC (2007–2009) and Chrysler Group LLC (2009–2014) before merging in 2014 with Fiat S.p.A. and becoming a subsidiary of its successor Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. In addition to the flagship Chrysler brand, FCA sells vehicles worldwide under the Dodge, Jeep, and Ram nameplates. Furthermore, the subsidiary includes Mopar, its automotive parts and accessories division, and SRT, its performance automobile division.
Magna International Inc. is a Canadian global automotive supplier headquartered in Aurora, Ontario. In 2014, Magna became the largest automobile parts manufacturer in North America by sales of original equipment parts, and one of Canada's largest companies. Its operating groups include Magna Steyr, Magna Powertrain, Magna Exteriors, Magna Seating, Magna Closures, Magna Mirrors, Magna Electronics and Cosma International.
Robert Anthony Lutz is a Swiss American automotive executive. He served as a top leader of all of the United States Big Three, having been in succession executive vice president of Ford Motor Company, president and then vice chairman of Chrysler Corporation, and vice chairman of General Motors.
Penske Corporation is an American diversified transportation services company based in Bloomfield Township, Oakland County, Michigan. Auto racing legend Roger Penske serves as chairman of the privately held company, and Rob Kurnick as president. The Penske Corporation opened the Penske Racing Museum in Phoenix, Arizona, inside of the Penske Auto-mall in late of 2017.
Rolf Eckrodt is a German automotive engineer and executive, who started his career with Daimler-Benz in 1966 and was CEO of the Mitsubishi Motors Corporation from 2001-2005. He is the only non-Japanese person who has held the position so far.
Sergio Marchionne was an Italian-Canadian businessman, widely known for his turnarounds of the automakers Fiat and Chrysler, his business acumen and his outspoken and often frank approach, especially when dealing with unpalatable issues related to his companies and the automotive industry.
Chrysler is the name of a major American automobile manufacturer officially known as FCA US LLC.
James E. Press is the former Deputy CEO of Chrysler Group LLC serving in that capacity from June to December 2009. He also served as Senior Advisor to Chrysler Financial Company. During this assignment, he assisted Sergio Marchionne in the transition to Fiat. Press was heavily involved in maintaining company operations and product development during the bankruptcy period.
Fisker Automotive was an American company known for producing the Fisker Karma, which was one of the world's first production luxury plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. It debuted at the 2008 North American International Auto Show, and first deliveries were in 2011. Production of the Fisker Karma was suspended in November 2012 due to bankruptcy of its battery supplier A123 Systems, with about 2,450 Karmas built since 2011 and over 2000 cars sold worldwide. In February 2014, Fisker Automotive's Karma vehicle design, tooling and a manufacturing facility in Delaware were purchased by Chinese auto parts conglomerate Wanxiang Group. Henrik Fisker, the founder of Fisker Automotive, retained the Fisker trademarks and the Fisker brand and launched a separate company, Fisker Inc, in 2016. Wanxiang later renamed its new company Karma Automotive.
Chrysler LLC and twenty-four of its affiliated subsidiaries filed a consolidated petition for bankruptcy on April 30, 2009, with the federal bankruptcy court in New York. The court filing occurred upon failure of the company to come to agreement with its creditors for an outside-of-bankruptcy restructuring plan, by the April 30 deadline mandated by the federal government.
The 2009 General Motors Chapter 11 sale of the assets of automobile manufacturer General Motors and some of its subsidiaries was implemented through Chapter 11, Title 11, United States Code in the United States bankruptcy court for the Southern District of New York. The United States government-endorsed sale enabled the NGMCO Inc. to purchase the continuing operational assets of the old GM. Normal operations, including employee compensation, warranties, and other customer service were uninterrupted during the bankruptcy proceedings. Operations outside of the United States were not included in the court filing.
The automotive industry in the United States began in the 1890s and, as a result of the size of the domestic market and the use of mass production, rapidly evolved into the largest in the world. However, the United States was overtaken as the largest automobile producer by Japan in the 1980s, and subsequently by China in 2008. The U.S. is currently second among the largest manufacturer in the world by volume, with approximately 8-10 million manufactured annually. Notable exceptions were 5.7 million automobiles manufactured in 2009, and peak production levels of 13-15 million units during the 1970s and early 2000s.
Chrysler, a large automobile manufacturer, was founded in the 1920s and continues today under the formal name FCA US LLC. The history of Chrysler involves engineering innovations, high finance, wide alternations of profits and losses, various mergers and acquisitions, and multinationalization.
The Canadian auto industry is closely linked to the U.S., due to the Automotive Products Trade Agreement and later the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and is in similar trouble. Canada's 3,500 car dealers, which employ 140,000 people, told the federal and Ontario governments in mid-November they are at risk from the financial crisis; they are asking the national government to help out despite a record year of sales. Ottawa is considering providing financial aid to the Canadian subsidiaries of the Big Three, and possibly auto parts companies as well. The auto industry argued that loan guarantees and other help would try to save tens of thousands of Canadian jobs threatened by the sudden drop in North American car sales. Chrysler Canada has asked for $1 billion in aid, making it the only Canadian arm of the Big Three to make a specific dollar request.
Tony Posawatz is an American automotive engineer, best known for his work on the Chevrolet Volt, and in 2012 becoming chief executive of Fisker Automotive. He is a State of Michigan licensed Professional Engineer (P.E.).
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. is an Italian and American multinational corporation and is the world’s eighth largest auto maker. The group was established in October 2014 by merging Fiat and Chrysler into a new holding company. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' main headquarters are located in the Netherlands, and the financial headquarters are in London for tax purposes. The holding company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and Borsa Italiana in Milan. Exor N.V., an Italian investment group controlled by the Agnelli family, owns 29.19% of FCA and controls 44.31% through a loyalty voting mechanism.
Michael Manley, often known as Mike Manley, is an English businessman. He was appointed as CEO of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) on July 21, 2018, following the announcement that Sergio Marchionne would step down due to health reasons. Prior to being named CEO, Manley had served as head of FCA's Jeep division since 2009.