For over a decade, ownership of Chrysler has been bouncing back and forth over the Atlantic like an Airbus jet. Since its founding in 1925, it was independently owned and operated right out of Detroit, then Daimler bought controlling interest in 1998, only to sell it to U.S.-based Cerberus Capital Management. Now Fiat is poised to assume a 35% stake in the company. So the question is, who holds controlling interest? Well in short, nobody does. Daimler holds nearly 20%, Fiat's taking over 35%, leaving Cerberus with 45% – the lion's share, but short of controlling interest.
But while the majority of Chrysler's shares may be back in Europe, Daimler isn't interested in holding onto its stake. Daimler and Cerberus had been talking about transferring ownership of the remaining 20% for a while already, but with America's financial institutions in shambles, who knows if the capital management company can even manage to find the capital to buy the rest of the company. In the meantime, it looks like Chrysler's at the whim of European automakers... yet again.

[Source: Reuters]

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