Ducati Is Not For Sale According To VW Board

Industry News / Comments

Volkswagen doesn't need the money right now.

In the wake of the disastrous Dieselgate scandal, Volkswagen was planning to sell Italian motorcycle maker Ducati, which was acquired by Volkswagen's Audi division for $1.1 billion, to help cover Dieselgate payouts. According to Reuters, the majority of Volkswagen's supervisory board isn't in favor of selling the Italian bike maker, so it may not happen after all. Those who were strongly against selling the motorcycle manufacturer cited the group's recent strong sales.

Earlier this year in April, VW assigned banks to evaluate possible acquisition deals for Ducati and Renk as part of the company's plan to review its brand portfolio to help fund its post-Dieselgate strategic overhaul. Reuters reports that five bidders were shortlisted to buy Ducati as part of this process, including Italy's Benetton family. Offers valued the brand between €1.3 billion and €1.5 billion (around $1.52 - 1.76 billion). However, VW's labour leaders, which occupies half the seats on the 20-member supervisory board that decides on asset sales, is not accepting a sale of Ducati or Renk without compelling financial reasons.

The employee representatives on Volkswagen's supervisory board will neither approve a sale of Ducati, nor one of Renk or MAN Diesel & Turbo," a spokesman for VW group's works council told Reuters. "Everyone who can read the VW half-year results should know: We don't need money and our subsidiaries are not up for grabs by bargain hunters."Backing this up is VW's six-month operating profits, which jumped 19 percent to €8.9 billion. Because of this and the supervisory board's strong opposing opinion, VW is now reviewing its plan to sell Ducati. While Ducati is technically owned by Audi, the automaker still needs the VW's supervisory approval to sell the motorcycle brand.

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Even the billionaire Porsche and Piech families, which control 52 percent of voting shares in VW and occupy four seats at the supervisory board, disapprove of selling Ducati and Renk according to inside sources at VW. "The management board has not even asked the supervisory board of Volkswagen, where such sales have to be ratified for its approval," the works council spokesman said. "Therefore we advise all supposedly interested parties: Save your time to check any books. A sale will not happen."

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