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VW says Italdesign buy will boost its growth strategy

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VW says Italdesign buy will boost its growth strategy

Luca Ciferri

Automotive News Europe -- May 25, 2010 11:21 CET

TURIN -- Volkswagen AG will acquire a 90 percent stake in Italdesign Giugiaro S.p.A., VW said today.

The Giugiaro family will retain 10 percent in the 42-year-old automotive styling company that is famous for designing cars such as the first-generation Volkswagen Golf.

VW CEO Martin Winterkorn said Italdesign will make an important contribution to the automaker's 2018 global growth strategy.

“The Volkswagen Group will be continuing its model initiative over the coming years and will benefit from the capacity and competence of Italdesign," Winterkorn said in a statement.

VW did not give any details on the price it paid for a a 90.1 percent stake in Italdesign, which has annual sales of more than 100 million euros ($122 million).

Italdesign Chairman Giorgetto Giugiaro said: "Entering Volkswagen means more security for our future."

VW aims to become the world's largest automaker by 2018 with sales of 10 million vehicles a year, compared with 6.29 million last year. The carmaker needs more designers and engineers to help reach the goal. In 2010 alone, VW Group plans to add 60 models, including upgrades.

VW has cooperated with Italdesign for many decades with Giugiaro designing not only the first-generation Golf, but also concepts for important models such as the first VW Passat, Scirocco and Audi 80.

Italdesign is also working on VW's new Up family of minicars.

Piech connection

VW Chairman Ferdinand Piech, who is a close friend of Giorgetto Giugiaro, was at Italdesign's headquarters in Moncalieri, 15km south of Turin, for the announcement. He did not attend a press conference but was present when Winterkorn and Giugiaro spoke to Italdesign's staff.

Piech spent the summer of 1972 working at the Italdesign to learn about design and engineering from Giugiaro.

Italdesign was co-founded by Giorgetto Giugiaro in 1968 and currently has 975 employees and 800 computer aided design workstations.

VW said it will acquire its Italdesign shares through Audi's Italian subsidiary Lamborghini Holding S.p.A. A VW spokesman said this was being done to keep the company's Italian operations bundled together.

Read more: http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100525/ANE/100529911/1424#ixzz0owcRi0p3

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Volkswagen Group Buys 90.1% of Italdesign Giugiaro

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Ending days of rumors, the Volkswagen Group announced Tuesday it was buying a 90.1 per cent stake in Italian design firm and Italdesign Giugiaro S.p.A. as part of its global expansion plan, without, however, giving out any information on the financial aspects of the deal.

The German automaker said that the shares are being acquired by AUDI's Italian subsidiary Lamborghini Holding S.p.A., while the Giuigiaro family will keep a 9.9 per cent stake in the Italian company that generates sales of over €100 million (US$122 million) and has a workforce of some 800 employees.

"The Volkswagen Group will be continuing its model initiative over the coming years and will benefit from the capacity and competence of Italdesign. The company will therefore be making an important contribution to our 2018 global growth strategy," said VW CEO Martin Winterkorn.

Italdesign's Giorgetto Giugiaro said: "Becoming part of the Volkswagen Group means revaluating ourselves and our strength. Entering Volkswagen means to open up a promising perspective for the company."

Founded in Turin by Giorgetto Giugiaro and Aldo Mantovani in 1968, the Italian styling house has created many vehicles models for the VW Group including the Golf I and concepts for important models such as the first Volkswagen Passat, Scirocco and the Audi 80.

Italdesign has also worked on a series of models for the Fiat Group including the Fiat Punto and Grande Punto and Alfa Romeo 156 /159 and Brera.

It remains to be seen if Italdesign Giugiaro will continue to work on projects for other automakers in the future or if the company will concentrate on the VW Group's portfolio.



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VW Locks Up Services of Italdesign

By Ward’s Staff

WardsAuto.com, May 25, 2010 10:39 AM

Volkswagen AG bulks up its design capability with a deal to take a 90.1% stake in Turin-based Italdesign Giugiaro SpA.

The purchase also represents a roadblock to some competitors – particularly newly emerging auto makers – that had leaned on the independent IGA for design help in the past.

Among the styling house’s recent projects were a 5-seat, 4-door concept Proton Holdings Bhd unveiled in Geneva this year, Ssangyong Motor Co. Ltd.’s new C200 cross/utility vehicle and Brilliance China Automotive Ltd.’s Zhongua luxury car.

Giorgetto Giugiaro, who founded IDG with partner Aldo Mantovani in 1968 and whose family will continue to hold the remaining 9.9% stake in the design firm, says IDG now will focus solely on designing cars for VW’s myriad brands.

Existing projects with other auto makers currently in the IDG pipeline reportedly will be completed, unless clients decide to pull the work away from the Turin design house.

VW isn’t disclosing the purchase price of the stake, which officially is being acquired by Audi AG’s Lamborghini Holding SpA subsidiary, officially keeping IDG in Italian hands.

IDG has a long history with VW, having designed the original Golf hatchback in the 1970s and created the concepts that led to the first Passat, Scirocco and Audi 80.

“Italdesign is the flagship for creative Italian automobile design and has been instrumental in shaping the face of the automobile industry worldwide,” says VW Chairman Martin Winterkorn.

The acquisition of Italdesign isn’t expected to impact VW’s existing design operations, all which reportedly will remain open.



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Wow, this is a pretty major coup isn't it? How can they possibly maintain their existing design team (which must be the size of a small army)?

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Ital has penned some real turkeys over the years, not so sure this is such a plus.

Is Guigario still there, or is he retired/dead ??

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