The plan of Fiat-Chrysler chief executive Sergio Marchionne to merge the two carmakers might entail moving the Italian carmaker’s primary listing to New York as early as 2015 once the merger is completed, two sources privy with the company told Reuters. Chrysler accounted for over half of the Fiat Group’s revenues in the first half, allowing the Italian carmaker to post a EUR435 million profit instead of a EUR501 million ($690 million) loss, according to 2013 estimates from IHS Automotive.
Moving the listing from Italy to the United States would help Marchionne distance himself from the struggles in Europe, where thousands of Fiat's Italian employees are on state-backed temporary lay-off schemes. The move would also highlight Fiat’s growth in the US as well as help convince a larger number of investors that the merged company can compete against larger rivals General Motors and Ford Motor Co.
"With a US listing, the whole investment story and the way in which people think about this company may change," International Strategy and Investment analyst George Galliers told Reuters. He noted that people currently think of Fiat as a weak European player with a good exposure to South America as well as to North America via Chrysler.
He added that once Fiat is listed in the US, people will think of the carmaker in the same “context as they do Ford and GM." Luciano Gallino, a sociologist who specializes in labor market changes, was quoted by ANSA news agency as saying that while Turin, Italy has been Fiat’s headquarters for 115 years, "the brain and muscles” are in the US. [source: Reuters]