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Strategic Management and Leadership (2) - Essay Example

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General Motors (GM) was founded on 16th September 1908, and over the past century it has experienced phenomenal growth to become one of the biggest companies in the world. As on 2008, GM was the largest selling automobile company in the United States and the 2nd largest…
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Strategic Management and Leadership (2)
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Download file to see previous pages The company also has a wide portfolio of brands which are primarily designed for the EU markets like Saab, Opel and Vauxhall. GM also sold its US brands like Chevrolet, Cadillac, Buick and Hummer in these markets.
The shrinking consumer market as well as tougher credit situations worsened the situations for GM, and it had to seek the US government’s aid for bailout. As a part of the emergency aid, GM had agreed to a string of efficiency measures, which included selling off loss making units like its Europe division and closing down some other brands. GM initiated the sell off process of GM Europe, but backed out later as Opel, its marquee European car brand, is a critical component of its global development strategy (Vlasic, 2009).
GM was heavily influenced by political factors both in the US and also in Europe. As it filed for bankruptcy protection in US and for government aid, it had to succumb to government pressure and accept a string of harsh measures that resulted in a major worldwide restructuring of its operations. In case of its European unit, it faced stiff opposition when it tried to close it manufacturing facilities in Germany and UK. Going forward, GM had to take into account political factors when it shortlisted possible suitors for the European unit.
The world recession brought GM to its knees to the extent that it had to file for bankruptcy protection in US courts on June 1, 2009. In the year ending 2008, GM absorbed a 21% decrease in sales in its strongest market, North America and a relatively modest decrease of about 6.5% in the European market. However, these shrinks were partially offset by the growing markets of South America and Asia.
The recession had a cyclical and vicious effect on GM’s US sales. With decreased availability of credit, there was a reduced off take of vehicles from dealers. In addition, increasing job losses due to recession meant lesser number potential ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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