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Fiat to sell Ferrari to VW?

2010-11-17 07:06

GERMAN STALLION: The VW Group may soon have a second prancing horse badge in its stable…

Sergio Marchonne, CEO of both Fiat and Chrysler, has done the unthinkable and suggested selling Ferrari.

The iconic Italian brand could be one of the strategic options Marchonne is considering to raise the cash to fund a Fiat merger with Chrysler.

In a statement released on Tuesday Fiat admitted that Ferrari, its components business Magneti Marelli and even Alfa Romeo might soon become joint-ownership or individually listed public companies

"These represent just some of the strategic options available," Fiat said during a briefing about its pending public stock options in Turin.

UNLOCKING VALUE

Fiat, even after its disastrous performance in the final GP of the 2010 F1 season on Sunday, still accounts for the worth of its Ferrari business at around $3.3-billion.

Unlocking some of Ferrari's value thruogh a public listing would provide Marchonne with the cash he desires to merge Fiat and the Chrysler group into one entity.

Fiat’s already planning to spin off its industrial division (trucks and tractors) to focus on designing, assembling and selling cars. 

The VW Group has expressed interest at the possible acquisition of Ferrari and Alfa Romeo, a move that could bring two of the last Italian-owned automotive icons under German control and give VW a second "prancing horse" badge - the other being Porsche.

With the VW Group holding cash reserves of $30-billion a purchase of Ferrari, if it becomes available, would not create refinancing issues. It remains unclear whether Fiat’s possible unbundling of Ferrari would constitute a deal including, or excluding, the F1 team from the terms of sale.
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