Bob Lutz says Kerkorian not a 'rapacious raider'

Detroit Free Press
Thursday, September 29, 2005


MILFORD -- Billionaire Kirk Kerkorian is not the `rapacious raider'
that he is often portrayed to be, and the Las Vegas investor has taken
a 9.5 percent stake in the automaker because he believes the company
is ready for a turnaround, General Motors Corp. Vice Chairman Bob Lutz
said Thursday.

Kerkorian's investment company, Tracinda Corp. said last week it may
seek one or more seats on GM's board of directors, but Lutz disputed
any assertion that Kerkorian was making demands.

`We are seeing so far, it would be fair to say, none of the behavior
that the press ascribed to Kirk Kerkorian,' Lutz told reporters after
a press conference at GM's proving ground in Milford.

Tracinda, which said last week it may increase its stake in GM to not
more than 9.9 percent, has maintained that Kerkorian is interested in
GM for investment purposes. "Mr. Kerkorian has made a long-term
value-driven investment because he has confidence in the company, the
American auto industry and the U.S. economy as a whole," a spokeswoman
for Kerkorian said earlier this month.

Lutz affirmed that position.

`He smells turnaround,' Lutz said. `He has an infallible instinct for
getting in at the right time.'

Contact MICHAEL ELLIS at 313-222-8784 or
[email protected]