Former Chrysler CEO to regain control
Chrysler’s former Chief Executive Officer, Wolfgang Bernhard, is in line to become Chairman of the Board after Cerebus closes the deal to purchase the company from Daimler-Benz.
Bernhard is one of those celebrity executives who seems never to have his glamour diminished, despite past failures.
Bernhard had been retained as a consultant by Cerebus, and there had been speculation that a slot for him had been reserved in the company.
After his stint at Chrysler, Bernhard went to Volkswagen, where he became the chief operating officer of that brand. But he crossed swords at VW with the company’s chief executive, Bernd Pischetsrieder, and was forced out of the company. Bernhard had attempted to restructure VW, but he lacked the support of the dominant player at VW, Ferdinand Piech, scion of the Porsche family and chairman of VW.
Eventually, Porsche took over VW in all but name, a complete triumph for Piech and his camp.
In the meantime, Bernhard has been sitting on the sidelines. He had been given credit for a turnaround at Chyrsler, in conjunction with the efforts of Dieter Zetsche.
But as Chrysler fell deeper and deeper into red ink, the supposed “turn around” at Chrysler began to look cosmetic, not substantive, and the contribution of Bernhard has been, consequently, questioned.
There was a time when it was expected that Bernhard would be in line to run VW. There was even a time when he was though in line to run Daimler.
Now, it appears he may be in line to help run Chrysler.
Such a deal.