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Ford: Volvo 'too good' to sell

2007-11-11 07:57
Ford said on Thursday it will not sell its Volvo unit for now and instead will focus on improving the brand's financial performance.

"Our plan now is to not sell it and to focus on improving,especially, the cost structure and the position of the brand itself reflecting their new terrific lineup of cars and trucks," Ford President and Chief Executive Alan Mulally said during a conference call with Wall Street analysts and reporters to discuss Ford's third-quarter financial results.

Mulally said Ford will continue to review the brand periodically.

Earnings

Ford also will disclose Volvo's financial performance starting next year.

Volvo's earnings now are combined with results from Jaguar and Land Rover as part of Ford's Premier Automotive Group, but Ford is planning to sell Jaguar and Land Rover early next year.

Ford lost more than $12bn in 2006 and has been struggling to cut costs and return to profitability. When it announced it was planning to sell its luxury Aston Martin brand in August 2006, it said the sale of Volvo was possible.

In July, Mulally confirmed that Ford was conducting a strategic review of Volvo and likely would make a decision by the end of this year.

Mulally said Thursday that Ford wants to enhance Volvo's position as a premium brand. The company said it plans to work closely with Volvo in areas such as product development and purchasing.

"They are really moving to a more premium brand, improving cost structure. They're going to be fine, I think," Mulally said.

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