Chrysler's Marchionne to get shares worth $3.99M

Chrysler Chairman and CEO Marchionne to get stock worth $3.99M for work on company board

Associated Press

DETROIT (AP) -- Chrysler Chairman and CEO Sergio Marchionne will get stock in the company valued at $3.99 million for more than three years of work on the board, Chrysler disclosed Friday.

Since Marchionne doesn't want any compensation for his work at Chrysler, the shares will go into an escrow account that he won't be able to access until he leaves the board or for 10 years, whichever comes first, Chrysler said in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Marchionne, who also is CEO of Italy's Fiat Group SpA, Chrysler's majority owner, will get 499,478 shares, just like the company's other eight board members. The other board members have chosen not to cash in their stock, but Marchionne must under the terms of Chrysler's 2009 U.S. government bailout, the company said. The shares will instead go into the escrow account, the filing said.

Chrysler now values its shares at $7.99 each, although that could change, according to the SEC filing.

Marchionne has continually refused to take a salary as CEO of Chrysler, although his compensation from Fiat and its industrial arm was $22.2 million last year. Most of that was in stock options.

The company announced Wednesday that it would set up a $38.2 million charitable foundation to honor Marchionne. The board will spend the money during the next five years. The cash initially will go to educate children of Chrysler employees, but it also will support other charitable causes, the company said.

Marchionne is widely credited with saving Chrysler after its 2009 bankruptcy. The Auburn Hills, Mich., automaker has gone from nearly running out of cash in 2008 to posting $1.29 billion in net profits through September of this year. Sales in the key U.S. market are up 22 percent through November. Marchionne has integrated many Fiat and Chrysler operations, sharing engines and other technology.

Chrysler is now a privately held company that's 58.5 percent owned by Fiat. The company could do an initial public stock offering next year.

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