GM Makes Undisclosed $600K Deal with CFO’s Wife’s Ad Agency
We the Taxpayers are still out $30+ billion on the auto bailout. Meanwhile, GM is cutting even more Crony Socialist deals.
General Motors told the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission today that it failed to report a $600,000 deal given to an ad agency where the wife of GM's chief financial officer is a partner.
In a filing GM said it had "recently learned about" a contract awarded in 2011 to an agency where CFO Dan Ammann's wife, Pernilla Ammann, is also the chief operating officer.
It’s not just the crime -- it’s the cover up.
“Recently learned about?” I know GM is a big company, even after the thousands and thousands of employee firings the Obama Administration ordered as a part of the bailout bankruptcy. But seriously, someone can write a $600,000 check -- to the CFO’s wife’s company -- and no one else notices?
The company has a detailed policy in potential conflicts of interest which says, in part: Deals of more than $120,000 in which a top executive's spouse has a financial interest must be approved by CEO Dan Akerson and Senior Vice President and general counsel Michael Millikin.
The arrangement must then be reported to the GM board of directors' Governance Committee, which annually reviews each top executive's independence.
Either GM CEO Dan Akerson knew about the deal and he’s complicit -- or he didn’t and the inmates are running the asylum.
(GM spokesman Dave) Roman said the deal was "properly ratified" by Akerson and Millikin "after the fact, which under our policies we are certainly allowed to do."
Oh - so Akerson is retroactively complicit? Was the board’s Governance Committee then retroactively notified, as per GM protocol? We don’t know.
Charles Elson, director of the Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance at the University of Delaware, said it's not uncommon for executives to have to disclose deals that benefit their spouses. "The question is, how did they miss it?"
He added: "How much of that did she share in? It's certainly something shareholders would want to know."
We the Taxpayers own 500+ million shares of GM stock -- on which we’re poised to take a $16 billion bath. We would certainly like to know.
News of the transaction was reported Oct. 7 by trade journal AdWeek, which quoted another GM spokesman saying there was no competitive review for the "one-off" deal.
“No competitive review for the ‘one-off’ deal.”
Sounds like quintessential Obama Administration-esque Crony Socialism to me.