There's too much going on at the moment.
It's no secret that the Volkswagen Group has been planning on taking Porsche public. The initial plan was to launch the initial public offering (IPO) in the fourth quarter of 2022, but those plans were apparently delayed due to the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine.
Porsche's IPO is still expected to be one of the largest in German history, with experts estimating that the brand could be worth as much as $95 billion. If Porsche turns out to be worth that much, it would immediately fill the coffers of the Volkswagen Group, which is currently valued at $105 billion.
It might not be as easy, as VW shareholders are split down the middle about whether the listing should go ahead.
Automotive News Europe is reporting that a recent poll conducted by Bernstein Research shows that 42% of shareholders are for the listing, while 41% are against it.
The main concern is the recent announcement that Volkswagen's Chairman of the Board of Management, Herbert Diess, would leave the company. Oliver Blume, the Chairman of the Board of Management of Porsche AG, will be taking over, but he won't give up his role at Porsche.
Three-quarters of shareholders are not convinced that Blume can lead the Volkswagen Group and Porsche going public simultaneously. Several investors also highlighted that it was not just about the influx of cash. Porsche going public was meant to give the famed German sports car more freedom, which it would not have if it remained under the watchful eye of VW's big boss.
"Blume can't take care of everything. This underscores the bad corporate management at Wolfsburg."
The controversial axing of Diess is also a problem. Several investors noted that it could negatively impact the IPO.
"Blume can't take care of everything. This underscores the bad corporate management at Wolfsburg," said Ingo Speich, head of sustainability and corporate governance at Top-20 Volkswagen investor Deka Investment. "It is poison for the Porsche IPO," said Speich.
Around 63% of the polled investors were concerned about this latest development, while 22% thought it would improve the IPO. Since investors tend to have the last word regarding big moves, there's a good chance the IPO might be delayed until VW finds itself in a more favorable position.
VW hasn't had the best of years, with sales dipping 26% in the first four months of 2022. Under Diess' leadership, VW expanded its EV portfolio, including the ID. 4, which is currently responsible for VW's growth in the EV sector.
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