Star Rising in US Car Industry
“Dan Ammann’s meteoric career track began with a call from his native New Zealand,” Detroit Free Press business reporter Chrissie Thompson writes. “We’ve got somebody very special whom we think should spend some time in New York,” the caller told Richard Bott, then a senior banker at Credit Suisse First Boston with an automotive focus. With that, Ammann, in his mid-twenties, made his first foray into the US auto industry. Ammann’s ability to manipulate numbers, and also understand their implications, helped send him “on a rocketship rise,” Bott said. Ammann’s career never slowed down. This week, Ammann becomes General Motors’ chief financial officer, a job that was a stop for former GM CEOs Rick Wagoner and Fritz Henderson. He is 38, has a bachelor’s degree in finance and economics and has worked for GM for a year. After growing up on a New Zealand dairy farm, Ammann’s first job out of the University of Waikato was in Credit Suisse First Boston’s New Zealand operations. He was hired by fellow New Zealander Chris Liddell, now GM’s outgoing CFO.