Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Chrysler Courting Investors, Dealers

Associated Press 06.20.07, 10:14 AM ET

DaimlerChrysler AG's Chrysler Group said Wednesday investors and dealers from 19 countries are visiting its headquarters this week to learn about the potential for the automaker's franchises in their markets.

As part of its effort to continue to increase sales and expand its operations in markets outside of North America, Chrysler said it has identified a need for additional sales outlets in key established and growth markets.

"While we will continue to aggressively defend our position in NAFTA, it is important that we expand in other markets so that we are not as dependent on the ups and downs of a single region," Tom LaSorda, Chrysler Group's president and chief executive, said in a statement. "With a more global focus we will be better able to take advantage of emerging opportunities."

New York-based private-equity firm Cerberus Capital Management is in the process of acquiring a controlling stake in Chrysler in a deal worth $7 billion. The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter.

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