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TIMELINE: Key dates in General Motors' history
May 29, 2009 / 8:46 PM / in 9 years

TIMELINE: Key dates in General Motors' history

(Reuters) - The following are key events in General Motor’s history, including major deals and alliances by the No. 1 U.S. automaker.

1908 - GM founded in Flint, Michigan.

1919 - GM creates captive finance arm, GMAC.

1929 - GM buys 80 percent stake in European Adam Opel AG.

1937 - After a bitter strike, GM recognizes the United Auto Workers (UAW) as the bargaining representative for its hourly workers.

1971 - GM buys 34.2 percent of Isuzu Motors Ltd. GM raises stake to 49 percent in 1998 and later sells it.

1981 - GM buys about 5 percent of Suzuki Motor Corp. It raises the stake to 20 percent in 2000 and later sells all but 3 percent.

1981 - GM and Toyota Motor Corp form a joint venture, known as NUMMI, to build cars in Fremont, California.

1986 - GM acquires British sports car maker Lotus. It sold Lotus in 1993.

1990 - GM buys a 50-percent stake in Sweden’s Saab and purchases the remaining half a decade later.

1990 - GM launches Saturn.

1998 - A 56-day strike at GM’s Flint stamping operations shuts all of GM’s North American assembly plants.

1999 - GM buys 20 percent of Subaru-maker Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. GM later sells all of the stake.

1999 - GM spins off parts maker Delphi Corp. Delphi’s U.S. operations enter Chapter 11 reorganization in 2005, where they remain.

2000 - GM decides to kill the Oldsmobile brand.

2000 - GM buys 20 pct of Italy’s automaker Fiat for $2.4 bln in GM stock. The deal includes a “put” option that gives Fiat SpA the right to force GM to buy the remainder of the Italian automaker.

2002 - GM signs deal to buy most of Daewoo Motor Co.

2005 - GM pays $2 billion to Fiat to cancel “put” option under its deal and buy its way out of the alliance.

2007 - GM signs deal with the UAW, which includes shifting GM’s retiree health care liabilities to an independent trust.

June 2008 - GM puts Hummer brand on review, ahead of a possible sale.

July 2008 - GM announces plans to cut costs by $10 billion and raise $5 billion through borrowing and asset sales.

Sept 2008 - GM and Chrysler holds talks to combine companies. GM sets aside talks in November to focus on preserving cash.

Nov 2008 - GM warns its liquidity will fall short of the minimum needed to run its business by the first half of 2009.

Dec 2, 2008 - GM seeks U.S. government aid of up to $18 billion.

Dec 19, 2008 - GM and Chrysler granted $17.4 billion in government loans.

Jan 21, 2009 - Toyota Motor Corp surpasses GM as the world’s largest automaker for the first time.

Feb 5, 2009 - GM announces plan to slash its global salaried workforce by about 10,000, or 14 percent, and cut the pay of most remaining white collar U.S. workers.

Feb 17, 2009 - GM raises U.S. funding request to a total of $30 billion, announces plans to cut global workforce by 47,000 and close five U.S. plants by 2012.

Feb 26, 2009 - GM posts 2008 loss of $30.9 billion.

March 5, 2009 - GM’s auditors raise “substantial doubt” about its ability to survive outside bankruptcy.

March 30, 2009 - GM Chief Executive Rick Wagoner ousted by U.S. government, replaced by Chief Operating Officer Fritz Henderson. Company given 60 days to develop new restructuring plan.

April 17, 2009 - GM says readying detailed plans for bankruptcy filing as it races to complete a business plan under federal oversight.

April 22, 2009 - GM says unlikely to make a $1 billion debt payment due June 1.

April 27, 2009 - GM offers final plan to reorganize outside bankruptcy by slashing bond debt, cutting over 21,000 more U.S. jobs and emerging as a nationalized automaker. GM warns it would file for bankruptcy if an offer to exchange bonds for company equity failed to cut $27 billion in debt by about 90 percent of bondholders.

May 5, 2009 - GM details plans to all but wipe out the holdings of remaining shareholders by issuing up to 60 billion new shares in a bid to pay off debt to the U.S. government, bondholders and the UAW.

May 7, 2009 - GM posts a first-quarter net loss of $6 billion and a cash burn of $10.2 billion.

May 15, 2009 - GM announces plans to drop 1,100 of its smaller, less-profitable dealerships.

May 21, 2009 - GM announces a new cost-saving labor agreement with the UAW, under which UAW-aligned healthcare trust will receive half of the $20 billion debt GM owes the fund in the form of stock and new debt, instead of cash.

May 22, 2009 - GM borrows another $4 billion from the U.S. Treasury and reaches deal with Canadian auto workers.

May 27, 2009 - GM’s offer to exchange $27 billion in bond debt for a 10 percent stake in a reorganized company fails.

May 28, 2009 - GM and the U.S. Treasury make new equity exchange offer under which bondholders would be offered 10 percent of a reorganized company and given warrants to purchase another 15 percent.

* GM reveals it may file for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11 and pursue a sale under Section 363(b) and the automaker would be split into two companies: Old GM and New GM.

* The common equity of New GM would be: 72.5 percent to the U.S. Treasury, 17.5 percent to New VEBA, 10 percent to Old GM.

Reporting by Soyoung Kim, additional reporting by Poornima Gupta; Editing by Andre Grenon

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