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DATE News (chronologically)
02/21/09
automotive
GMAC may move from rust belt to sun belt
GMAC Financial Services, whose Motor City roots date back 90 years, is considering changing its headquarters from Detroit to Charlotte, N.C., but would keep its auto financing arm here.

One reason for considering the shift: Charlotte is the home of GMAC CEO Alvaro de Molina, who joined GMAC in 2007 after a 17-year career at Charlotte-based Bank of America.

"Our CEO lives in Charlotte and operates out of that city. Whether we decide it becomes our legal headquarters, I don't know," said Toni Simonetti, GMAC spokeswoman. "But we are going to have a strong presence in Detroit. Detroit is the center of our auto business and that is not going to change."

No timeline has been set when the decision would be made, she said, but, the regional financial center is actively wooing the firm.

Another motivation for a move reflects the rise of the southern U.S. versus the failure of Michigan's sputtering economy, said Lansing economist Patrick Anderson. [In other words, move from the rust belt to the sun belt]

"Financial institutions like to go where the action is in terms of building and borrowing and people. Charlotte is an attractive base," Anderson said.  Detroit News

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