Cadillac HQ Move to NYC Causes A Stir!

Last week General Motors announced that it would move the Cadillac flagship premium brand’s headquarters to New York City, raising a caterwauling response of criticism and skepticism that mostly missed the point of the move.

The decision comes as Cadillac continues to score high praise for the quality and performance of its new line-up while posting a 5 percent decline in sales since last year. And while Detroit boosters get misty seeing this as Cadillac’s abandonment of its ancestral home, new Cadillac President Johan de Nysschen is just trying to get the new Cadillac brand out in front of the world market.

New York City is unquestionably the hub of global media, making technologically instant dissemination of the brand message even more pervasive and effective.

And these days New York is also the capital of the foreign occupation of America by the international super rich. As European, Chinese, Middle Eastern, South Asian, South American, and African millionaires and billionaires scramble for their Big Apple pied-a-terre co-ops and condos, with prices in tens of millions, and parking spaces now topping a million a pop, the Cadillac headquarters decision is clearly part of an international brand expansion strategy.

As these high net worth foreigners acquire a taste for New York and all things American, there is a good shot for Cadillac to be shipping vehicles to places they have never tread.

As for the impact on the home front in terms of jobs, Cadillac builds four of seven vehicles in Michigan and will build its new yet un-named top-of-the-line Cadillac at the Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly Plant beginning next year. The New York office be roughly 100 sales and marketing employees — including up to 50 who may move from the metro Detroit area.

This is George Polgar of GT Marketing for KYW News Radio.