Aston Martin is holding discussion with possible partners to jointly develop high-end engines as well as electronic parts to boost its sports-car lineup. Aston Martin is in talks with Daimler and other carmakers, and aims to secure a deal within the next two months, according to Andrea Bonomi, Chairman of Investindustrial, which recently acquired a stake in the British carmaker.
Aston Martin plans to make a £500-million (EUR600 million) investment in the next four years to further develop the brand, Bonomi disclosed during an event centered on the future of the Italian auto industry. Since Aston Martin is a global luxury-car brand that is not owned by larger carmaker, it is harder for the company to cover development costs.
Private equity fund Investindustrial agreed in December 2012 to acquire a 37.5 percent holding in Aston Martin for EUR190 million in a capital increase. The agreement enabled Aston Martin to gain access to funds it needs to properly compete with Volkswagen Group's Bentley and Fiat SpA's Ferrari and Maserati.
Kuwaiti sovereign wealth fund Investment Dar Co. is still the major shareholder in Aston Martin, after spending around £503 million from Ford in 2007. Investindustrial is known for being able to turn around high-end vehicle manufacturers, selling Italian motorcycle maker Ducati to Audi in 2012. The private equity fund intends to remain a shareholder at Aston Martin for at least 10 years to rebuild the brand, Bonomi remarked.