Qatar Holding plans to sell up to half its Volkswagen shares

Article by Christian Andrei, on August 25, 2010

Qatar Holding wants sell up to 25 million Volkswagen AG preference shares to improve the liquidity of the preference shares, raising about 1.6 billion euros ($2.4 billion) for other transactions. However, Qatar Holding, the investment arm of the Gulf state of Qatar, will raise its holding in VW's ordinary shares to give it the third-largest voting stake in the German automaker. The company reiterated its commitment to its Volkswagen investment.

In a statement, QH said that it intends to continue increasing its holding in Volkswagen AG ordinary shares to 17 percent, as previously announced, subject to receipt of regulatory approvals.

This would mean that Qatar Holding has the third-largest voting stake in Volkswagen behind automotive group Porsche Automobile Holding SE and VW's home state of Lower Saxony.

At the end of August, Qatar's voting stake in VW was 6.78 percent. Qatar said it agreed on a lock-up period for the remainder of its non-voting VW preference shares until Dec. 31, 2009.

VW has around 105 million preferred shares in circulation. VW and Hussein al-Abdullah, executive director of the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), which controls Qatar Holding, have yet to comment on this issue. Credit Suisse and Goldman Sachs are assisting in the share sale

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