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GM names new CFO

Big business: GM is yet to announce a new CEO to replace Fritz Henderson.

Former Microsoft CFO joins GM as chief financial officer

18 Jan 2010

GENERAL Motors has named former Microsoft Corp chief financial officer Chris Liddell as its new CFO.

Mr Liddell, who has been Microsoft’s most senior accountant since May 2005, was appointed to the crucial finance role at GM on December 21 by chairman and CEO Ed Whitacre.

While Mr Liddell replaces the retiring Ray Young, Mr Whitacre is yet to announce a replacement for departed GM CEO Fritz Henderson.

“Chris brings a depth and experience to this job that were unmatched in our search for a new financial leader,” said Mr Whitacre.

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“Chris will lead our financial and accounting operations on a global basis and will report directly to me. We're also looking to his experience and insights in corporate strategy as a member of the senior leadership team in helping our restructuring efforts.”

Mr Liddell (left), 51, left Microsoft on December 31 and was previously CFO for the world’s largest forest products company International Paper Co, before which he was CEO of Carter Holt Harvey Ltd, then New Zealand's second-largest listed company.

Mr Liddell has also worked as an investment banker as managing director and joint CEO for CS First Boston NZ Ltd, and holds an engineering degree with honors from the University of Auckland and a Master of Philosophy degree from Oxford University in England.

In other GM personnel news, Brian Small has been appointed to the position of executive director for fleet and commercial operations as well as assuming responsibility for the International Product Center (IPC).

Effective immediately (from January 13), he will report to GM vice-president sales, service and marketing Susan Docherty.

Mr Small was most recently general director for GMNA order fulfillment and global supply chain center operations - a position that is yet to be filled.

“I’m confident Brian will bring his extensive experience and strong leadership to the critical fleet and commercial organisation and make an immediate positive impact,” said Ms Docherty.

“His service at each of our brands on the ground level, working with various dealerships throughout the country, will bring invaluable perspective and customer focus.”

Mr Small has worked for GM since 1979 in a range of sales, service and marketing roles, including field sales and service , business management, advertising, marketing, service operations, sales promotions, incentives, events management, regional sales, service and marketing leadership, and vehicle distribution.

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