Report: GM, Fiat talked about a merger of their European operations

Article by Christian Andrei, on March 12, 2012

A Wall Street Journal report cited sources who said that there had been a “brief” discussion between General Motors and Fiat about a merger of their European operations earlier this year. The WSJ report cited insiders who divulged that the talks were attended by the CEOs of GM and Fiat, Dan Akerson and Sergio Marchionne.

They also said that the discussions didn’t reach board level. During that time, GM was also engaged in talks with PSA/Peugeot-Citroen that resulted in an alliance. The source said that Fiat hoped to convince GM that it would be a better partner than PSA. The WSJ said that any chance of a deal between GM and Fiat disappeared after GM's agreement with PSA was announced last month.

Last Tuesday, Marchionne said that Fiat was open to the prospect of entering partnerships with anyone, even with the recently formed tie-up between GM and PSA. Presently, Fiat and PSA have an existing joint venture to produce small commercial vans in Italy.

GM and PSA have entered a global alliance to attain a drop in annual costs of at least $2 billion and to avoid plant closures or job cuts in Europe. The paper believes that the talks are proof of a rising interest among car companies to resolve common issues by coming together.

Topics: gm, fiat, europe

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