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Ally Financial Names New CEO

NEW YORK — Ally Financial Inc. announced today that Jeffrey Brown was named CEO. The former president and CEO of Ally’s dealer-financial services business succeeds Michael A. Carpenter, who is retiring from his post and from the company’s board after five years.

Brown also joins the finance source’s board of directors. He will work closely with Chairman Franklin “Fritz” Hobbs on all areas of the business, officials said.

“Jeff Brown is an extraordinarily talented executive with deep financial and operational experience and a strong vision of how to take Ally forward into the future,” said Hobbs. “The breadth of experience Jeff has gained during these transformation years at Ally has prepared him fully to take on leadership of the company as it enters its next chapter.

Brown joined the company in 2009 as corporate treasurer. In 2011, he became executive vice president of financing and corporate planning, where he oversaw the company’s finance, treasury and corporate strategy activities. In March 2014, he was named CEO of Ally’s dealer-financial services business.

“I am honored to be Ally’s new CEO,” Brown said. “We are absolutely committed to continue serving our millions of retail customers and nearly 17,000 auto dealers with market-driven, innovative products and services supported by 7,000 dedicated Ally employees. We are well positioned to meet the challenges of the evolving OEM market, meet our origination goals, serve our customers better than ever and improve returns for shareholders.”

Carpenter also joined the company in 2009, becoming CEO during a pivotal time. He guided the firm through the 2009 financial crisis and led its transformation from captive finance company to an independent auto finance provider and then publicly traded company last year. In late December, the U.S. Treasury Department sold off its last remaining shares in Ally, marking the end of the government’s final investments in the Troubled Asset Relief Fund (TARP). Hobbs noted that U.S taxpayers made $2.4 billion on their investment in the financial services company.

“Mike stepped in when we needed him most,” Hobbs said. “Ally is a stronger and more focused financial services company today because of him, and it has a great future thanks to his tireless leadership over the past five years. On behalf of the entire board, I thank him for his many contributions and wish him well for the future.”

Carpenter will continue serving as a consultant to the board. And according to officials, Carpenter had been working with the board for several months on succession planning.

“Ally is a tremendous success story on many levels, and I am proud to have been part of it, working alongside so many tremendously talented people as we built what is today the country’s leading auto finance provider, powered by a growing direct bank,” Carpenter said. “Having completed our IPO last April and exited the TARP in December with a strong balance sheet and a market leading position, it is the right time for me to step aside to hand the baton to the next general of leadership. I am pleased that Jeff Brown, who was my recommended successor, has been chose as Ally’s next CEO. I have great confidence in Ally’s future and believe it will continue to grow from strength to strength.”

Steven Feinberg, CEO of Cerberus Capital Management, one of Ally’s largest shareholders, added: “I am extremely enthusiastic about Jeff Brown’s assuming leadership of the company. He brings energy, experience and strategic rigor to the job. Having observed Fritz Hobbs’ leadership of Ally’ board for the past five years, I am particularly pleased that Fritz and Jeff will be working closely together guiding this company for many years to come.”

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U.S. Treasury Will Not Increase Pay for Ally Financial CEO

(Reuters) – The Obama administration is holding the total compensation unchanged this year for the head of bailed-out auto lender Ally Financial, the Treasury Department said.

“The CEO compensation package payable by Ally Financial has not increased,” the Treasury said in a statement, adding that the overall amount of compensation for the company’s CEO has been unchanged since 2010.

Michael Carpenter has been Ally Financial’s CEO since 2009, according to the company’s Web site.

U.S. taxpayers bailed out Ally, along with much of the U.S. financial and auto sectors, under a $700 billion program enacted in 2008 to fight a financial crisis and recession. Ally and a clutch of other firms had to agree to pay restrictions set by Washington because they received out-sized aid.

Over the last few years, the Treasury has sold shares in most of the firms it bailed out. Taxpayers have recouped nearly all of the $423 billion that was spent under the bailout, known as the Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP.

Ally is the last firm with compensation packages set by the administration, although the Treasury said last week it would sell most of its remaining Ally shares.

The Treasury has been criticized in the past for alleged laxity in pay restrictions on the company’s executives. An internal Treasury watchdog last year criticized the department’s authorization of pay hikes for executives at Ally, and at General Motors and AIG, which were also bailed out under TARP.

The Treasury said it was keeping cash compensation for Ally’s top 25 executives unchanged. Most of their compensation, however, is in stocks, which the Treasury says makes their pay performance-based.

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