Volkswagen leaving Detroit in the rust

Stephen Beard Sep 8, 2007
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Volkswagen leaving Detroit in the rust

Stephen Beard Sep 8, 2007
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TEXT OF STORY

Doug Krizner: Europe’s biggest carmaker, Volkswagen, is moving its North American headquarters from Michigan to northern Virginia. Here’s Marketplace’s Stephen Beard:


Stephen Beard: Volkswagen says it’s shifting its U.S. headquarters to the East Coast because that’s where most of its American customers are.

The company also believes that a young, skilled workforce will find Herndon, in Virginia, a more attractive place to be. Four hundred new jobs will be created, 400 will go in Detroit. About 600 will remain there in a call center.

Volkswagen is anxious to shake up ones of it biggest and most troubled foreign operations. Its U.S. division lost almost $700 million last year, about half its total losses.

The move to Virginia is an undoubted blow to Detroit.

The city clearly has an image problem, says a senior Volkswagen executive: “People are saying everything is its fault. It’s a rust belt. And it’s not taking CO2 seriously.”

From the European Desk, this is Stephen Beard for Marketplace.

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