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Porsche swallows Volkswagen as VW grabs Scania

Kristen Allen · 3 Mar 2008, 17:39

Published: 03 Mar 2008 17:39 GMT+01:00

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This clears the way for Porsche SE to exercise significant control over both VW and Scania, Ferdinand Dudenhöffer, director of the Centre for Automotive Research in Gelsenkirchen, Germany told The Local after the flurry of deal making was announced.

"These were two perfect deals which will position Porsche SE as one of the most important carmakers in the world," the automotive sector expert said. "The rest of the car industry is looking at them closely and expects they'll be very competitive in the next year."

Through their €2.9 billion deal with Scania, Wolfsburg-based Volkswagen increased their voting rights in the company to 68.6 percent. VW's decision to take control of Scania could dramatically reshape the heavy vehicle industry via a possible eventual merger of the Swedish group with German rival MAN, of which VW is also the leading shareholder. This means for all practical purposes, Porsche SE's increased stake in VW means that the company will also have significant influence within the heavy truck and utility vehicle sector via Scania and MAN.

Car expert Dudenhöffer told The Local that the alliance between the companies will be practical for all involved because they can share expertise across the board.

Stuttgart-based Porsche Automobil Holding SE, which controls luxury sports car manufacturer Porsche AG, had been expected to increase its VW share, previously at 31 percent, for some time. The two car companies have a long-standing relationship of engineer cooperation. But whether the company's move today was intentional or coincidence is unclear.

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“Our aim is to create one of the strongest and most innovative automobile alliances in the world, which is able to measure up to the increased international competition,” Dr. Wendelin Wiedeking, Chief Executive Officer of Porsche SE, said in a statement Monday.

The Porsche-VW deal is expected to face several months of regulatory approval by German authorities.

Kristen Allen (kristen.allen@thelocal.de)

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