DaimlerChrysler has sold a majority stake in the Chrysler Group to the American private-equity firm Cerberus for $7.4 billion, the auto giant announced today. The deal unhooks the money-losing American arm of the international conglomerate from its German partner, which will retain a 19.9% stake in Chrysler and change its name to Daimler AG as soon as this fall.
CEO Dieter Zetsche says the company kept a hand in because it plans to continue working closely with Chrysler. The agreement saddles the new Chrysler Holding LLC with expensive health care and pension obligations, one of the deal's sticking points. The UAW president said he was "pleased" with the resolution, and shares in DaimlerChrysler rose 7% on the German market.