Dan Akerson is trying to defend GM with “progress” But what progress? image

Looks like GM CEO Dan Akerson is sick of people on the outside “wildly” speculating about his company.

That’s why the executive took to the editorial pages in a classic public relations tactic yesterday and wrote something to defend his company after weeks of turmoil that saw the firing of a top executive and speculation that it might go bankrupt again.

Akerson says that General Motors is so scrutinized for two reasons: its long history of being an automotive giant, and its recent history of being bailed out by the U.S. government.

“After a wrenching bankruptcy, recession and continued economic uncertainty, we are getting there,” writes Akerson.

I’m sorry – is getting where? GM shares have lost 49% of their value relative to the Dow – for the first 7 months of 2012 GM’s market share was 18.0%, down from 20.0% for the same period in 2011 – and let’s not forget Europe, where they will close some factories…. So I’m asking myself – is getting where ?

Indeed GM is again number one in the world again in auto sales. Oh – one second – it was because Toyota had some big problems in Japan after the deathly earthquake and tsunami. So it’s false. And also there is VW in the game that is making big bucks by beating the new D-Segment Malibu with the Passat which is U.S. made!

Yes indeed GM is not in danger of a bankruptcy filing. At the moment, there are none of the classic signs of a bankruptcy filing, such as low cash (GM has plenty). But no one here is talking about the near future – tomorrow, today, or next month.
Yes the company made some changes after 2008 – they closed some factories, introduced new models – and essentially feels it has nothing to do with the old GM.

But the big problem here is that GM is losing market share in its home market, in US and its European division is losing money every day.

And I’m talking about hundreds of millions of dollars per year. Yes $747 million before interest and taxes last year and $15.6 billion since 1999.
They made an alliance with PSA Peugeot Citroen in February, in an effort to restore profitability in Europe and compete with stronger rivals such as Volkswagen.
But most of the times – two bads don’t make one good. Yes because PSA is also in deep problems. Two bads make a worst.

So here we are. GM’s boat is taking water again unfortunately, and the actual economic situation in the world is not helping at all.