GM sees no near rebound for U.S., goes shopping elsewhere
The U.S. is both General Motor’s largest single market and its home turf, but it is also facing historically tough times. "The most important thing we can do is to turn around the North American business," said GM’s Chief Operating Officer Fritz Henderson. "We do not have a huge amount of optimism for the rest of the year as the pressure on consumer continues."
Because of the uncertainty in North America, more investment is going into emerging markets such as India and China. These investments have helped support the company in the troubled times. For example, a little over a decade ago GM was originally criticized for its $1.5 billion investment in China. Now, while the North American operations have lost $51 billion over the last three years, the operations in Asia are on track for a full-year profit.
This trend seems to continue as today GM announced a partnership with the GAZ Group, a Russian maker of light commercial vehicles. The two companies will now share ownership of an Italian diesel engine manufacturer. Last month, Russia overtook Germany to become Europe’s largest car market. While General Motors already has a strong presence in Russia, it may eventually utilize this partnership to help ensure its future top spot.