After almost two years with the federal government owning a sizable chunk of Chrysler, the once bankrupt automaker is now free and clear of Uncle Sam. Thursday night Chrysler parent Fiat paid $500 million for the U.S. Treasury Department's 6% stake in Chrysler.
Now comes the fun part.
Chrysler is ready to run.
It won't be a sprint, but more of a steady jog that will pick up speed in the months to come. For CEO Sergio Marchionne, no longer having Uncle Sam as a shareholder frees up the company to do more in the capital markets. When I talked with him this morning, he made it clear Chrysler's access to the capital markets means the company will be able to do more on a quicker time frame, and do it more efficiently.