NOVEMBER 29, 2003
Schrempp in the spotlight
The spotlight will be on DaimlerChrysler boss Jurgen Schrempp this week as the legal action between the German car company and billionaire investor Kerk Kerkorian comes to a head in a court in Wilmington, Delaware. Kerkorian is seeking damages from the German automobile company because it portrayed the 1998 takeover of Chrysler as "a merger or equals" when in fact it was always planned as a takeover. Kerkorian, who owned 14% of Chrysler, claims he was tricked into voting for the deal and lost huge sums of money as a result. He wants $3bn in damages.
Kerkorian's law suit was started after Schrempp was interviewed by the Financial Times in London in 2000 and said that he had always planned that Chrysler would be a division of Daimler-Benz but that he did not tell the Chrysler shareholders.
Both Schrempp and Kerkorian are due to testify, as is the former chairman of Chrysler Bob Eaton.
If DaimlerChrysler loses, Schrempp will have to resign and that could have serious implications as he is a big fan of the company's involvement in Formula 1 with the McLaren-Mercedes team.
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