• Jul 18, 2009
The family soap opera surrounding the attempted takeover over of Volkswagen by Porsche may soon conclude if a reported deal is approved next week. Porsche SE, the holding company that owns automaker Porsche AG, has attempted to secure its independence by acquiring a controlling interest in Volkswagen. Unfortunately for Porsche, the economic downturn has put the company in danger of insolvency thanks to a hefty debt load.
In the midst of all the financial maneuverings, a personal drama has steadily unfolded as well. Porsche is controlled by the descendants of Ferdinand Porsche's children, Ferry Porsche and Louise Piëch. The leaders of the Porsche and Piëch branches of the family, Wolfgang Porsche and Ferdinand Piëch, have been at odds throughout this entire process. Piëch is chairman of VW's supervisory board, while cousin Wolfgang holds a similar position at the family business. As the sequence of events progressed, it appeared that Wolfgang Porsche was trying to oust his cousin, while Ferdinand Piëch was trying to eliminate Porsche CEO Wendelin Weideking.

It now appears that the two companies have reached an agreement that will allow Porsche SE pay off much of its €10 billion+ debt. If approved, Volkswagen would pay €8 billion for Porsche in two stages. The first would give VW 49.9%, with the rest coming at a later date.

[Source: Reuters | Image: David Hecker/Getty]


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  • 26 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      I may be stupid but VW would "pay €8 billion for Porsche in two stages. The first would give VW 49.9%, with the rest coming at a later date"... what does that mean? I thought Porsche was "buying" VW? paying Porsche the first stage would give VW 49.9% of what?

      How is Porsche paying for the controlling stake in VW? How much of VW does Porsche own right now?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Looks like "cannibalism" really runs deep in the VW/Porsche family...
        • 5 Years Ago
        It's the other way around. VW is buying Porsche.
      • 5 Years Ago
      That Peich is amazing. It's like he's made a deal with the devil. That guy always ends up getting what he wants! It'll be sad to see Weidking go. I really think he did an outstanding job at Porsche. Some other company will be extremely fortunate to get him. Still, this VW/Porsche thing has had more plot twists than an entire season of LOST, it may not be over yet...

      • 5 Years Ago
      Maybe all this is to checkmate a outside take-over...
      • 5 Years Ago
      If this *really* turns out as true - VW buying Porsche after Porsche tried to buy VW... family drama, rich & beautiful (well some of them)... throw in some love-to-be-white-knight-sheiks with some billion bucks in their pockets, the - as far as I know - best or second best payed CEO worldwide (Wiedeking, with > 150.000.000 US$ annual compensation) who lost in the end... dallas & dynasty live...

      MAKE A TV SERIES OUT OF IT :-)
      • 5 Years Ago
      So I guess VW and Porsche are now going to be forever intertwined because of this whole mess. Its not just Porsche owning VW or VW owning Porsche; they each own half of the other. Eek! What a mess!
        • 5 Years Ago
        Historically speaking, VW and Porsche have always been very intertwined.
      • 5 Years Ago
      So, basically what's happening is VW is buying themselsves out? meaning VW AG could no longer be owned by Porsche SE Holding company?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Porsche tried to buy VW but they over borrowed (or something like that) and are in desperate need of money so VW is buying Porsche so Porsche doesn't go bankrupt.

      To do this, the payment will be in two stages. VW is going to buy a 49.8% stake (ownership) in Porsche first then the rest (51.1%) later which will give VW 100% control of Porsche.

        • 5 Years Ago
        wow I must have missed a lot not following this every day!... so it basically flipped on them and VW is now buying Porsche?! haha

        hmm I wonder how that's gonna go. Porsche owners already get made fun of for having a supped up Beetle, i'll bet that comment is gonna get a whole lot more popular! not saying I agree with it tho, Porsche makes some great cars. But from a simple guess, VW can benefit from Porsche's technology and Porsche can benefit from VW's processing/manufacturering and sharing parts?? it'll be interesting to see what happens to both manufacturers in the next few years.
        • 5 Years Ago
        dang reply button =/..
        • 5 Years Ago
        @info ... uhh no... lower saxony owns 20% of vw, thats what screwed up the whole takeover, and the reason vw is buying porsche is so that they wont be needing the loan from the qatari government
        • 5 Years Ago
        >>>"@info ... uhh no... lower saxony owns 20% of vw, thats what screwed up the whole takeover, and the reason vw is buying porsche is so that they wont be needing the loan from the qatari government"
        • 5 Years Ago
        I don't know what happened to my last reply to djuro. Only my quoting him showed up. I answered that I don't know if he reads German. I do, and according to the German magazine Spiegel, Qatar will own between 14.9% and 19.9% of Porsche.
      • 5 Years Ago
      It's alot more complicated than VW buying Porsche. Porsche SE is the holding company that owns Porsche AG (the car maker) and also owns 50% of VW AG (the entire VW Group). Now VW AG is buying Porsche AG (the car maker) but Porsche SE appears to still own half of VW AG. So basically, VW AG is absorbing Porsche AG and the whole entity will belong to Porsche SE... Porsche SE will use the money to pay down the debt they built up buying VW. Porsche SE is run by both the Porsche and Piech families. It's basically a big mess.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Whaa..? So Porsche is buying itself? That's a bit paradoxal :)
      • 5 Years Ago
      i think for us customers it won´t matter anyway. they will both go on producing what they do best. VW and Porsche have always been working together anyway. so no big deal. i mean look at Audi and Lamborghini. They are under VWs roof as well and are doing very, very well, posting record sales every year.
        • 5 Years Ago
        S5 and Cayman are you serious? Not very similar cars.
        • 5 Years Ago
        The thing is, Audi and Lamborghini don't compete with eachother, so having them under the same ownership works nicely. Porsche and Audi do have some cars that directly compete -- the S5 vs. the Cayman, Q7 vs. Cayenne, S8 vs. Panamera 4S. And that's just the road cars.... Audi and Porsche also have major presence in various motorsport competitions. R15 vs. RS Spyder, for example. Porsche and Lamborghini have some good competition going on as well.

        If VW is really going to go ahead with absorbing Porsche, don't be surprised if the Cayenne and Panamera get killed within a few years. VW's only really weak area right now is the roadster space above the Audi TT, and the Porsche lineup would fill that gap nicely.
        • 5 Years Ago
        "Audi and Lamborghini don't compete with eachother"
        The R8 doesn't compete?
        • 5 Years Ago
        "The R8 doesn't compete?"

        With Lamborghini? No, according to Audi, Lambo, and exotic car dealers. But it could be marketing speak
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