October 30, 2012

How The General Motors Compny Was Started

A Few Words About GM

The General Motors Company, known throughout the world as GM is an automotive giant. As of 2011 it was the world's largest automaker in terms of vehicle unit sales. Currently GM employs 202,000 people and does business in over 150 companies countries. Let's take a look however at the beginnings of the General Motors company and how it got started. As with all thriving American businesses General Motors has a unique history behind it that has contributed to the success. The brands the company operates under are: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, Opel, Vauxhall, and Holden.


The General Motors company was founded on September 16, 1908 in a city called Flint, Michigan. At that time all General Motors was a holding company for Buick, another American car brand that you likely are well aware of as well. At that time in 1908 the company was controlled by William C Durant. When the turn of the 20th century came there were less than 8000 automobiles in America and as a whole and Durant's main industry was manufacturing horse-drawn vehicles and not even automobiles. As his horse-drawn vehicle business it expanded he ended up joining forces with Charles Stewart Mott who joined his horse drawn carriage company.
In the years to come Mott and Durant would become more involved in the automobile industry. It would acquire Oldsmobile later in 1908 and then would buy a name you might've heard of, Cadillac, in 1909. Once they completed the acquisition of Cadillac to Durant and Mott we're now firmly entrenched in the automobile industry in the growing United States. After even more expansion that led to the creation of GMC truck division in 1910, Durant began to take on too much debt and his business was in danger of collapsing around him.
Did you know that for a short portion of time Chevrolet actually purchased controlling interest in GM? Durant would take back control of the company in one of the most interesting takeovers in American business history, but there was a portion of time where Chevy owned a controlling interest in General Motors. Durant would reorganize the company in 1916, but that shortly thereafter would lose control for good after the new vehicle market crash.
After the departure of Durant for good Alfred P Sloan would take General Motors into what became their heyday as an automobile manufacturer. With Sloan in charge General Motors Corporation let a postwar global dominance of the automobile industry. This growth would last from then all the way into the 1980s when they employed 349,000 workers in over 150 assembly plants around the world. General Motors would lead the world in global sales for 77 consecutive years from 1931 through 2007. This is obviously the longest streak for any automaker ever.

The Fall of A Giant

On the first of June, 2009, happened the biggest corporate failiure - General Motors filed for bancruptcy. The company had been struggling to keep its business since 2005, but after the financial crisis hit in 2007, this became a really tough task. Its sales started decreasing and losses started growing. The government injected $19.4 billion trying to help the company, but that funding had no effect on the final result. Later, the autorities would invest another $30 billion to resurect and reorganize the auto titan. As a result of ll of this, txpayers ended owning a big stake of 60% in the company.
Hopefully this gave you some insight as to the early days of this great company, and how it contributed to the success that we saw later and his development. General Motors has hit some rough days in the past decade but has even emerged from those as a shining light in the automotive industry.

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