Business Standard

Volkswagen’s $1.8-bn Ducati sale hits union roadblock


German carmaker Volkswagen has put the ^1.5 billion($1.8 billion) sale of Ducati motorcycle­s on hold after resistance from German trade unions and internal rifts on strategy, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Ducati is wholly controlled by Volkswagen's luxury brand Audi, which is at odds with the parent over strategy, and a decision to sell the 91-year old business, which is based in the Borgo Panigale district of the northern Italian city of Bologna, needs to be approved by VW's supervisor­y board. Labour leaders at Volkswagen, who hold half the seats on the 20-member board, have strongly opposed a sale regardless of price. Volkswagen has told five bidders to hold off making binding bids for Ducati, which it put up for sale in April to help raise cash to fund a strategic overhaul following the emissions scandal at Europe's largest automaker, the sources said.

The bidders, some of whom expressed astonishme­nt and anger at the way the process had been handled, were ready to pay about ^1.5 billion for Ducati, the sources said.

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