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BigPontiac

Opel to spin off, GM will retain stake

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After a day of worker protests across Europe at various General Motors plants, news comes today from Carl-Peter Foster (above), head of GM Europe, that Opel is planning to reorganize itself as a joint-stock company. GM would basically give up between 25-50 percent of its stake in the spun off company, with the hope that outside investors would make up the rest. The reorg would also likely include concessions by workers for lower pay as well as a restructuring plan to lower operating costs. The main obstacle to separating Opel from GM in the past has been the degree to which the two are intertwined, but a joint-stock company in which GM remains the largest shareholder allows the two to operate as closely as ever while severing some of those ties that bind. It may also set the stage for a detangling of Opel's models from GM's product portfolio over time, which would facilitate the outright separation of the brand from its parent company in the future.

In the meantime, Opel needs approximately 3.3 billion euros or $4.2 billion USD to stay solvent and GM is in talks with governments in Spain, the UK and Germany about receiving government aid. Opel is also submitting a business plan by the end of next week to four German states in which it operates plants, and the German federal government headed by Chancellor Angela Merkel will receive a similar plan by this Monday, March 2.

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Seems like this might be a good joint venture opportunity for Daimler and BMW where each has an equal investment that adds up to a majority stake. German government cash would be used to recapitalize the company and minimize Daimler's and BMW's risk. However, it's hard to see that happening without GM becoming a minority stakeholder.

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why has no one mentioned, 'does Germany really need another car manufacturer'? In theory they would benefit more from being part of GM. Now they are cast into the albatross of the other German makes.

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So... is this a way to do some asset stripping without the executives landing themselves in jail for screwing the shareholders?

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So I would say this gives them a 50/50 chance they will still be around in 10 years. Maybe it is time for a few more auto companies to become history lessons.

:deathwatch:

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Finally Opel can start to breathe the Air of Freedom, how easy was that, one little protest and viola ...

Now I hear GMDAT is seeking their freedom too, looks like all of GM's children want to go their own way ...

Interesting times we live in ...

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Only problem for those who want to spin off is that none of their product are exactly compelling/class leading with the exception of maybe the new Insignia.

"Yay! we're free! erm...now what?"

Unless I'm mistaken, GME has been calling the shots for a while now, so it's not GM's fault that most of the product is still lackluster. Of course I could be wrong, don't know the workings inside, that's just what it looks like from the outside.

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Only problem for those who want to spin off is that none of their product are exactly compelling/class leading with the exception of maybe the new Insignia.

"Yay! we're free! erm...now what?"

Unless I'm mistaken, GME has been calling the shots for a while now, so it's not GM's fault that most of the product is still lackluster. Of course I could be wrong, don't know the workings inside, that's just what it looks like from the outside.

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Nope your not mistaken, GME has been callin many shots and missing most attempts.

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--------------------

Nope your not mistaken, GME has been callin many shots and missing most attempts.

Let's see how well GM does without us, shall we? Whatever stake they have in the new Opel will have to be sold sooner than you think to repay the U.S Government's loans ...

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Did GMNA see this coming a while ago and that's why they started a big push with Chevy in Europe?

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Whatever stake they have in the new Opel will have to be sold

Presuming GMNA survives, what will this mean for Buick product that is just now aligning with Opel? Or do you think eventually Buick will become a China-owned operation that - possibly - exports cars to NA?

Edited by wildcat
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Let's see how well GM does without us, shall we? Whatever stake they have in the new Opel will have to be sold sooner than you think to repay the U.S Government's loans ...

Fine, I can see GM selling off their stake in a few years repaying the GOV and all will be good.

Did GMNA see this coming a while ago and that's why they started a big push with Chevy in Europe?

Yup I agree that GM was looking for a way to spin of the Socialist arm of GME and using their own Chevy/Buick/Cadillac to grow in Europe.

Now is the time to dump the Unions and move towards a true non union setup.

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Opel has the weakest identity and the blandest cars of all German automakers... like Chrylser or GM, it'll exist solely to provide jobs.

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Clearly Opel is a basket case. No wonder: it operates primarily in a high cost, high competition market among better players. You know a company/business is in trouble when they believe the way to survival is moving upmarket. IT NEVER WORKS. Opel doesn't have a ghost of a chance without help from the German government and German investors. Prediction: Opel will become the first German government-controlled automaker since VEB Sachsenring.

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Clearly Opel is a basket case. No wonder: it operates primarily in a high cost, high competition market among better players. You know a company/business is in trouble when they believe the way to survival is moving upmarket. IT NEVER WORKS. Opel doesn't have a ghost of a chance without help from the German government and German investors. Prediction: Opel will become the first German government-controlled automaker since VEB Sachsenring.

Totally Agree with you here. :deathwatch:OPEL :deathwatch:

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Opels as Buicks is a silly dream that won't happen. Buick itself will have a hard time surviving Cadillac's financial need to move downmarket where the sales (and hopefully profits) are in the New Great Depression. That's if Cadillac survives. GM doesn't have the luxury of making China-specific marketing moves without regard to its overall financial strength in NA just to protect its position in China any longer.

Presuming GMNA survives, what will this mean for Buick product that is just now aligning with Opel? Or do you think eventually Buick will become a China-owned operation that - possibly - exports cars to NA?
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Presuming GMNA survives, what will this mean for Buick product that is just now aligning with Opel? Or do you think eventually Buick will become a China-owned operation that - possibly - exports cars to NA?

At this point I couldn't really tell you. I have to make some personal choices myself. I can officially retire April 10, 2009 from GM with 20 years of service. Then I will have to decide either not to retire and stay with GM, or pick door number 2 and start with the new Opel in the same position I currently have, or door number three, go with another German automaker that has been holding a job for me, waiting for me to retire ...

I love choices, remember change is good ...

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Opels as Buicks is a silly dream that won't happen. Buick itself will have a hard time surviving Cadillac's financial need to move downmarket where the sales (and hopefully profits) are in the New Great Depression. That's if Cadillac survives. GM doesn't have the luxury of making China-specific marketing moves without regard to its overall financial strength in NA just to protect its position in China any longer.

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Very Possibly correct. :scratchchin:

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At this point I couldn't really tell you. I have to make some personal choices myself. I can officially retire April 10, 2009 from GM with 20 years of service. Then I will have to decide either not to retire and stay with GM, or pick door number 2 and start with the new Opel in the same position I currently have, or door number three, go with another German automaker that has been holding a job for me, waiting for me to retire ...

I love choices, remember change is good ...

Good Luck, sounds like you have a nice choice at least. Very rare in todays economy. Hopefully it all is still there.

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At this point I couldn't really tell you. I have to make some personal choices myself. I can officially retire April 10, 2009 from GM with 20 years of service. Then I will have to decide either not to retire and stay with GM, or pick door number 2 and start with the new Opel in the same position I currently have, or door number three, go with another German automaker that has been holding a job for me, waiting for me to retire ...

I love choices, remember change is good ...

Retire and take the job with BMW.

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Anyway, there is a part of me that sees VERY interesting possibilities here ----- for Chevy and Cadillac. That is, once the restructuring is all said and done.

Opel is on a very slippery slope. The German government will need to be very generous with them, since I don't see them becoming a "European" success story any time soon.

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Wow...wonder what will happen to Vauxhall and Holden.

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