If Tom LaSorda has been smiling more lately, Daimler's annual report may hold the explanation.
The Chrysler LLC co-president guided Chrysler through the divorce from Daimler and into the arms of Cerberus Capital Management — and got paid handsomely for his efforts.
Many thought LaSorda would leave Chrysler after Cerberus brought in Bob Nardelli last summer to replace him as chairman and CEO. But LaSorda, a manufacturing veteran who is much respected by Chrysler dealers, suppliers and line workers, has stayed on.
Last week Daimler revealed in its 2007 annual report that LaSorda got a tidy $15.8 million bonus for helping guide the Chrysler sale. That was in addition to the $3.2 million he received for his service on the management board of what then was known as DaimlerChrysler.
LaSorda left DaimlerChrysler's board last summer along with former Chrysler COO Eric Ridenour, who received an $8.2 million compensation package. Ridenour has since left the company.