I get it. The 2009 bailout-bankruptcy-overhaul orchestrated by the Obama administration left a lot of hard feelings in its wake. Bondholders who lost out and dealers who were forced to close felt burned, and to this day they, and plenty of other folks, hold it against General Motors Company (NYSE:GM).
I’ve been writing about GM for a long time. I know all the arguments, I’ve heard it over and over from all sides.
But here’s the thing: This GM is a different company from the one that went down the tubes in 2008. It has a different CEO, different leaders in key positions, and a whole different strategy from the one that got Old GM in so much trouble before 2009.
I’ve bought stock in this new General Motors Company (NYSE:GM), because more and more I like what I see from the new team. Here’s why I think it’s worth setting aside those hard feelings and taking a closer look at this new improved automaker.
A big transformation that’s still unfolding
Even with the boost provided by the bailout (and maybe more importantly, by the bankruptcy that allowed them to shed a whole bunch of unwanted brands and factories), General Motors Company (NYSE:GM)’s turnaround hasn’t been as dramatic as the one pulled off by its old crosstown rival, Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F).
But in way, that’s what makes GM an intriguing investment opportunity. GM still has lots of work to do, and the stock price reflects that. But that work — some of which is many years overdue — is now getting done:
North American product overhaul. General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) has a ton of new products on the way for the U.S. market. New pickups, new SUVs, new cars from Chevys to Cadillacs — over the next two years, executives say, GM will go from having the oldest product line of any major automaker in the U.S. to having the freshest.
Huge changes in Europe. GM’s German subsidiary, Opel, has lost more than $18 billion-with-a-“b” since 1999, and it could lose $2 billion more in 2013. But CEO Dan Akerson has driven an all-out overhaul of Opel over the past year. A factory is set to close, the management team is all new, a cost-sharing arrangement with French automaker PSA Peugeot Citroen is in place, and a bunch of new models are on the way. GM says Opel could break even as early as 2015.