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Chrysler LLC's Ninth Annual Matchmaker Event Marks 25th Anniversary of the Diversity Supplier Development Organization
AUBURN HILLS, Mich., Sept. 22, 2008/ -- DiversityBusiness.com /- Chrysler LLC celebrated two milestones last week during a Company-sponsored program, hosted by the Global Sourcing department. On Sept. 18, the Chrysler Diversity Supplier Development organization marked the 25th anniversary of its program, and the ninth annual Matchmaker event was held at Chrysler's global headquarters. John Campi, Chrysler Executive Vice President and Chief Procurement Officer for Global Sourcing, kicked off the event by announcing the formalization of the Company's women-owned business program, adding this important and influential group to the Diversity Supplier Development series of programs.

"Women-owned businesses are the fastest growing segment of the U.S. economy, with more than five million U.S. businesses owned and operated by women," said Campi. "Chrysler has a great opportunity to help create business connections for our supplier partners, be it large or and small, that ultimately can lead to a positive economic impact on the communities in which we operate and live."

The Matchmaker event has become one of the premier networking events in the supplier diversity community. It helps Chrysler's minority and women-owned suppliers to partner, compete, expand and thrive through the interactions with representatives from Tier 1 suppliers. It also helps Tier 1 suppliers achieve the Company's sourcing goal of at least nine percent of their procurement through qualified minority or women-owned suppliers during the 2008 calendar year.

The 2008 event drew more than 1500 attendees, with more than 250 corporate exhibitors making business relationships with Chrysler Tier 1 suppliers. Nearly all the exhibitors were either minority-owned or women-owned businesses eligible to either support Chrysler business or business prospects within the Company's supply base.

The event also included U.S. veteran-owned business exhibitors.

"Since we held our first Matchmaker event in 2000, there has been more than $1.5 billion worth of business generated to minority-owned businesses," said Jethro Joseph, Chrysler LLC Senior Executive - Supplier Diversity Development. "Even in these challenging times, we strongly believe in our commitment to creating a sustainable, diverse supply base that directly reflects our customer base."

Joseph also recognized Eberspaecher North America as the Company's "Top Supplier Award" winner for successfully generating and sourcing new business to Karan Fasteners as a result of the 2007 Matchmaker event.

Eberspaecher took an offshore opportunity and created a "match" with a local minority-business enterprise, Karan Fasteners. The match resulted in a contract between the two companies valued at approximately $2 million. Not only did this new business award generate work that is being handled in the U.S., it also brought work to the U.S. that had previously been done outside North America.

"The Matchmaker program is not just about dollars and cents, it is about the relationships that are created, and in the case of Eberspaecher and Karan Fasteners, reconnected, to produce 'win-win' outcomes for those in the auto supplier community," said Joseph.

In March, Chrysler announced that it spent $4.8 billion with minority suppliers last year, representing 15.5 percent of its total annual procurement of goods and services, an increase of $900 million from 2006. Since launching its Diversity Supplier Development program, Chrysler has purchased more than $38 billion worth of goods and services from minority-owned companies and has developed a number of programs to build its minority supplier base.

Chrysler continues to support several organizations geared to assisting Tier 1 suppliers achieve their minority sourcing goals, including the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC), the Canadian Aboriginal Minority Supplier Council (CAMSC) and the Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), among others.

Chrysler LLC and its employees have been recognized with numerous awards and recognition for its sustained, dedicated commitment to its objectives of diverse supplier relations, including "Corporation of the Year" from the NMSDC and the Michigan Minority Business Development Council (MMBDC), among others.

About Chrysler LLC
Chrysler LLC, headquartered in Auburn Hills, Mich., produces Chrysler, Jeep(R), Dodge and Mopar(R) brand vehicles and products. Total sales worldwide in 2007 were 2.7 million vehicles. Sales outside of North America were the highest ever with an increase of 15 percent over 2006. Its product lineup features some of the world's most recognizable vehicles, including the Chrysler 300 and Town & Country, Jeep Wrangler and Grand Cherokee and Dodge Challenger and Ram. The Chrysler Foundation, the company's philanthropic arm, annually supports hundreds of charitable organizations in the United States and throughout the world. In 2007, the Foundation gave approximately $21 million in charitable donations.

To locate photos from the 2008 Matchmaker Event, visit Chrysler LLC's media site at www.media.chrysler.com.
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