Fiat not planning to purchase a stake in Mazda

Article by Christian Andrei, on May 30, 2012

Fiat doesn’t have any plans to purchase a Mazda stake, according to Fiat Chairman John Elkann. Instead, Fiat will proceed with plans to raise its stake in Chrysler Group to more than 60%. Elkann made this statement at the annual shareholder meeting of Exor, the Agnelli family's investment company through which Fiat and Chrysler are controlled.

Last week, Mazda and Fiat announced that they will team up to create new variants of the most popular sports cars: the MX-5 and the Alfa Romeo Spider. This action led to speculations that the partnership will be expanded over time. However, both of them downplayed the likelihood of an equity alliance. Alliances enable automakers to share the costs related to the development of new vehicles.

It also helps in making the pricing competitive and in aiding them to gain a foothold in new regions. However, this could lead to problems. Fiat, which holds 58.5% in Chrysler, is planning to purchase 3% more stake beginning in July. It is likely to accomplish its global turnaround by getting an Asian partner even after having a difficult history with previous Chinese partners.

Eventually, Fiat will raise its Chrysler stake to 100%. On Tuesday, Elkann declined to explain the move’s timing. When asked if Exor was making contingency plans for a future exit of Greece from the euro zone, Elkann said that that the strategy of the holding company hasn’t changed. Exor has 30.4% of capital goods group Fiat Industrial. Furthermore, it holds 15% of certification company SGS, 30.5% of Fiat, which controls Chrysler, and 69.5% of Cushman & Wakefield, a real estate company. [source: Reuters]

Topics: fiat, mazda

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