Daimler chief executive Dieter Zetsche has purchased around 22,000 shares at a price of EUR52.08 each using the proceeds from share options that were granted to him almost a decade ago. Zetsche made the $1.51 million (EUR1.15 million) share purchase on Wednesday, July 17, 2013 according to Daimler's Web site.
Joerg Howe, head of global communications, said in a statement that with the share purchase, Dieter Zetsche was underscoring his confidence in “a sustained and positive development for Daimler,” adding that the move by the carmaker’s top honcho is a signal to all the other Daimler shareholders.
According to Daimler, Zetsche financed the stock purchase from the sale of around EUR1.25 million of shares that were acquired after exercising call options granted in 2004. All of Zetsche's three transactions this week came after Daimler’s shares hit a two-year high following pre-announced results that the carmaker’s operating profit before special items in the second quarter of 2013 dropped by only 8.2 percent to EUR2.1 billion.
The supervisory board of Daimler has been blasted by investors like DWS for offering share option programs that allow senior management to acquire shares very cheaply due to their benchmarking to a peer group that includes less profitable volume carmakers like Renault and Fiat.