General Motors's board of directors appointed current interim CEO Ed Whitacre as the company's permanent CEO on Monday, saying that the auto giant didn't need any more uncertainty after going through three CEOs in less than two years.
Whitacre's appointment ends the company's seven-week search for a replacement to Fritz Henderson, who resigned on Dec. 1, and gives Whitacre complete control of the taxpayer-owned car company.
"Having spent the past few months learning the business, meeting with our employees, customers and dealers, and working with the GM leadership team, I was both honored and pleased to accept this role," Whitacre said in a statement. "This is a great company with an even greater future, and I want to be part of it."
GM formally announced Whitacre's appointment at a press conference this morning, along with offering a business update about its potential initial public offering and its scheduled repayment of billions in taxpayer aid.
Whitacre's rapid accent to the head of GM comes after the former AT&T (T) executive was appointed chairman of the company back in June 2009 soon after GM emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy. He took over the interim CEO role in December when Henderson was ousted from his job, commuting regularly from his home in Texas to Detroit.
Whitacre said he will continue to commute between Dallas and Detroit as permanent CEO instead of moving to Detroit.
Whitacre did not give a timetable on how long he expects to be CEO, saying he might spend a couple years before the company reevaluates their business and leadership.
The new CEO said Monday that company remains committed to repaying the taxpayers by June as originally scheduled. He also said the company will continue to consider becoming a publicly-traded company again, when the company's internal and outside market conditions are right.