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Shifting gear: Daimler cuts its dividend to fund switch to electric vehicles

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(L-R) Harald Wilhelm, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG. Finance & Controlling/Daimler Mobility, Ola Kaellenius, CEO of Daimler AG, Martin Daum, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler Truck AG are seen at Daimler's annual press conference to announce financial results for 2019 in Stuttgart, Germany. Photo: Thomas Niedermueller/Getty Images

(L-R) Harald Wilhelm, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG. Finance & Controlling/Daimler Mobility, Ola Kaellenius, CEO of Daimler AG, Martin Daum, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler Truck AG are seen at Daimler's annual press conference to announce financial results for 2019 in Stuttgart, Germany. Photo: Thomas Niedermueller/Getty Images

Getty Images

(L-R) Harald Wilhelm, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG. Finance & Controlling/Daimler Mobility, Ola Kaellenius, CEO of Daimler AG, Martin Daum, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler Truck AG are seen at Daimler's annual press conference to announce financial results for 2019 in Stuttgart, Germany. Photo: Thomas Niedermueller/Getty Images

Carmaker Daimler AG has slashed its dividend to the lowest since the financial crisis and promised deeper cost cuts as CEO Ola Kallenius frees up cash this year to electrify its vehicle lineup.

Kallenius, who has struggled to make headway on a restructuring push in his first nine months on the job, vowed to deliver "significantly" higher profit this year than last, by squeezing out costs and capping investments.

Daimler now faces rising competition from Tesla, which plans to build a Berlin factory.

Bloomberg