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Fiat founders leaving real estate, keeping cars

by Bill Cawthon on

Despite constant statements by analysts, most notably Max Warburton of Sanford C. Bernstein, that Exor, the Agnelli family holding company, is eager to get out of the car business, it seems Exor is more eager to get out of the real estate business.


Exor has retained Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley to find a buyer for Cushman & Wakefield, the world’s third-largest real estate company.

Exor bought a controlling interest in the firm in 2007, paying $565.4 million for a 67.5% stake. Since then, Exor has increased its holdings to 80.9%.

The sale could bring as much as $2 billion to Exor.

Exor still doesn’t seem to be in any hurry to dump its shares of FCA, which closed at $15.51 on Tuesday, down five cents from a record high closing price of $15.60 on Monday. FCA stock has risen 73.9% since October 13, 2014, its opening day on the New York Stock Exchange; it is now within 85 cents of Ford’s common shares.

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.

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