United Technologies CEO Greg Hayes told Jim Cramer in an exclusive interview on Monday about his conversation with Donald Trump last week, and says there was no "quid pro quo" with the president-elect.
"I think we came up with a relatively good solution for everybody … We still got to do the preponderance of the restructuring, which we were going to do anyways. So it's — I would say no 'deal,' but at the end of the day a good deal for UTC," Hayes told the "Mad Money" host.
United Technologies is the parent company of furnace and air conditioner maker Carrier, which was under fire by Trump on the campaign trail because of its plans to move some manufacturing operations to Mexico from Indiana. Trump used Carrier as an example to highlight the decline of manufacturing in America.
Ultimately, United Technologies agreed to receive $7 million in tax credits from the State of Indiana, issued at $700,000 per year for 10 years. Carrier also agreed to invest approximately $16 million in its Indiana facilities, and will keep more than 1,000 people employed in Indianapolis.
Hayes stated that he received a phone call from Trump a week before Thanksgiving, with a request from the president-elect to reexamine the decision to close the Indianapolis Carrier factory.
"He said, 'We are going to do a lot of things in this country that are going to make it a lot more conducive to manufacturing. We are going to take the tax rate down; we are going to reduce all of this burdensome regulation. When all that happens you are going to be printing money, but I need you to relook at your decision to close the factory in Indiana,'" Hayes said.
Hayes confirmed that there is approximately 1 million manufacturing square feet in Mexico already, thus he considered it to be a natural evolution to close facilities in Indiana and move them to Mexico.
"Nor was there any, I would say, deal," Hayes said about his conversation with Trump, "There was no quid pro quo for him to say 'look, I am not going to tax you, if you don't do this.' He simply said 'take a look at this.'"
And while Hayes did agree to keep employees in Indiana, he said he still considers free trade to be essential for the growth of the U.S.
"This country was founded on two principles, right – immigration and free trade. And that is what made America great over time because we had to develop and innovate in the U.S. and take those products and sell them around the world," Hayes said.
Carrier will still close its Huntington, Indiana facility and move 700 jobs to Mexico.