July 19 The embattled chief executive of German
luxury carmaker Daimler, Dieter Zetsche, purchased
roughly 1.15 million euros ($1.51 million) worth of stock on
Wednesday using the proceeds from share options granted nearly
10 years ago.
Zetsche, whose contract was extended in February by just
three years instead of the expected five, bought 22,000 shares
at a price of 52.08 euros each according to Daimler's website.
"With this share purchase, Dieter Zetsche is underscoring
his confidence in a sustained and positive development for
Daimler," said Joerg Howe, Head of Global Communications, in a
statement on Friday.
"It is a signal to all the other Daimler shareholders."
Daimler said its CEO had funded Wednesday's stock purchase
from the sale of roughly 1.25 million euros worth of shares that
were acquired after exercising on Monday call options granted in
Zetsche's three transactions this week came shortly after
the stock hit a two-year high following pre-announced results
that showed operating profit before special items in the second
quarter fell by only 8.2 percent to 2.1 billion euros.
Daimler's supervisory board has come under fire from
investors like DWS, Germany's largest retail fund manager, for
offering share option programmes that allow senior management to
buy shares very cheaply due to their benchmarking to a peer
group which includes far less profitable mass-market carmakers
like Fiat and Renault.
($1 = 0.7639 euros)
(Reporting by Christiaan Hetzner; editing by Patrick Graham)