US:Bill Ford says tried to hire Chrysler CEO Zetsche
Bill Ford says tried to hire Chrysler CEO Zetsche
DETROIT -- Ford Motor Co. Chairman and CEO Bill Ford Jr. said on Tuesday that he tried to hire away Dieter Zetsche from DaimlerChrysler several years ago.
"I talked to Dieter several years ago but it didn't lead anywhere," Bill Ford told reporters after an address to business leaders in Detroit where he paid tribute to the departing Chrysler group CEO who is heading back to Germany to head the parent company.
The world's fifth-largest automaker announced last week that Zetsche, already slated to replace Juergen Schrempp as DaimlerChrysler's chief executive, will also take on the premium Mercedes division from next month.
"He is obviously incredibly talented," said Bill Ford, but added the discussions with Zetsche were not for a CEO job.
Zetsche has led a successful but painful restructuring at DaimlerChrysler's U.S.-based Chrysler arm since he arrived in Detroit nearly five years ago. Ford, on the other hand, is gearing up to announce a new restructuring plan for its North American operations.
In his speech earlier, Bill Ford joked that "when I think about all these accomplishments, maybe I should have hired him".
"You should have asked me. Perhaps I would have said yes," Zetsche joked back.
But later when asked if Ford had offered him a job, Zetsche said, "those are speculations."
My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.
My next Ford.....