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Sergio: FCA+GM, even if it means a ”bear hug” — Yes, it’s real

by David Zatz on

While General Motors has clearly spurned Fiat Chrysler’s desire to talk about a merger, FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne is doubling down on his efforts to bring one about. He told Automotive News’ Larry Vellequette, in a rare two hour interview, that the numbers were far too good to pass up the opportunity.

fca+GM+SMMr. Vellequette quoted Mr. Marchionne as saying, “It would be unconscionable not to force a partner.” However, the FCA chief said he did not want to do a hostile takeover, saying that one can hug nicely, tightly, or like a bear. “…it can degrade, but it starts with physical contact…. we’re talking about cataclysmic changes in performance, just huge.”

Mr. Marchionne claimed that the changes in profits would be “exponentially” larger than the combined earnings of the two companies now — quoting $30 billion per year in cash with 17 million vehicles sold per year.

However, GM is refusing to talk to Mr. Marchionne, much less walk through the numbers with him.  Mr. Marchionne said the markets would refuse the idea of not talking — perhaps there would still be no deal, but there should at least be a discussion.

Sergio MarchionneHe also said that there had been offers for mergers, partnerships, and takeovers of FCA. Mr. Marchionne has promised not to cut dealers or manufacturing jobs.

A hostile takeover is still not beyond question. Mr. Marchionne said more than once that the FCA board could not ignore the potential of the combination with GM, and said, “An attack on GM, properly structured, properly financed, it cannot be refused.”

See the full story at Automotive News.

The Sergio Marchionne photos are copyrighted by Marc Rozman and used by permission. 

David Zatz founded Allpar in 1998 (based on a site he had begun in 1993-94), after years of writing reviews for retail trades. He has been quoted by the New York Times, the Daily Telegraph, the Detroit News, and USA Today. Before making Allpar a full-time career, he was a consultant in organizational psychology. You can reach him by using our contact form (much preferred) or by calling (313) 766-2304


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