GM makes Caddy separate unit, moves HQ to NY
General Motors is taking the radical step of setting up its Cadillac brand as a separate business unit that will move its headquarters to the trendy Soho area of New York City from GM headquarters in Detroit next year.
Only a few others have done that. Most notable is Nissan Motor, which split off its Infiniti luxury brand into a separate unit and moved Infiniti headquarters to Hong Kong. offices with Cadillac’s president, Johan de Nysschen, was running Infiniti during its overhaul into a separate business unit and its move to Hong Kong. He’s been Caddy chief since August.
GM says the will be no change to technical product development teams located in Michigan, nor to the manufacturing or assembly operations. Cadillac management is reviewing which of its people will move to NY and which will remain where they are, in the Detroit area and other locations.
The move comes as Cadillac struggles with sagging sales despite new car models, and as it prepares to launch a big, rear-drive model foretold by the Elmiraj concept car. The new model is, Caddy says, meant to be the brand’s version of the Mercedes-Benz S-class.
“We are very proud of our Detroit roots and heritage, and the majority of the Cadillac workforce will remain in Michigan,” de Nysschen said. “But there is no city in the world where the inhabitants are more immersed in a premium lifestyle than in New York. Establishing our new global headquarters in Soho places Cadillac at the epicenter of sophisticated living. It allows our team to share experiences with premium-brand consumers and develop attitudes in common with our audience.”
Here’s what GM said today:
“As part of the continued expansion of Cadillac, General Motors today announced a strategic realignment that will establish the flagship brand as a separate business unit. In addition, the new Cadillac organization will expand to New York with a new global headquarters opening in 2015.
“The realignment affirms Cadillac’s importance to GM’s strategy. Creating a new Cadillac business unit enables it to pursue growing opportunities in the luxury automotive market with more focus and clarity.
“‘With the relentless upward repositioning of successive new-generation Cadillac products, the next logical step is to provide Cadillac more freedom to cultivate the brand in pursuit of further global growth,’ said GM President Dan Ammann.”
Source: USA Today
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