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General Motors Consolidating International, South American Operations

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General Motors on Tuesday announced its plans to consolidate its International region, which encompasses markets like Southeast Asia, India, and Oceana, with its South American operations, effective January 1st, 2018. Barry Engle, the current executive vice president and president of General Motors South America, will head up the new unit; he will be based out of Detroit, where he will report to General Motors President Dan Ammann.

“Our strategy (is) to refocus our traditional business operations to free up the resources and financial power needed to really step into the next chapter of the automotive industry,” Stefan Jacoby, executive vice president of GM International Operations, told Reuters on Tuesday.

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The move to shrink down international operations outside of North America and China even further is consistent with the strategy of GM CEO Mary Barra, who has overseen everything from the end of manufacturing in Australia and Indonesia to the sale of Opel and Vauxhall to PSA Group since taking over the reins in 2014.

The emphasis on smallness of operations with an eye for profitability has helped facilitate GM’s investments in battery-electric, fuel cell electric, and autonomous vehicle technologies just to name a few. On Monday, GM indicated its intention to launch 20 new EVs by 2023, as well as its intention to phase out vehicles powered by combustion engines altogether.

GM’s strategy seems to be working on Wall Street; Reuters notes that GM closed at $42.15 per share on Monday, setting the highest mark since the company’s 2010 IPO after filing for bankruptcy.

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News Source: Reuters