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Found 34 results

  1. Ever since PSA Group took ownership of Opel and Vauxhall back in spring, many were wondering what the French automaker had in store. Today at a press conference at Opel's headquarters, Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller unveiled the turnaround called PACE. Here is a summary of PACE, Return Opel and Vauxhall to profit by 2020 Lowering costs on each car built by €700 (about $813) Committed to keeping Vauxhall as a brand for Great Britain Entering 20 new markets by 2022, with Brazil and China topping the list Accelerating the transition from General Motors to PSA Group platforms (originally was planned to finish by 2027, now plan to finish by 2024). This will reduce the number of platforms Opel/Vauxhall use from nine to two. Powertrain families will also decrease from ten to four Nine new models by 2020. This begins with a new Combo van next year and Corsa subcompact in 2019 Launching four electrified models by 2020, with an electrified option being available for each model by 2024 According to Lohscheller, the existing product strategy would not meet the upcoming CO2 targets coming into effect. Thus the decision was made to move up plans for electrification Opel's technical center in Ruesselsheim will engineer all-new Opel/Vauxhall vehicles to have them stand out from their Citroen/DS/Peugeot brethren Ruesselheim will also become a global competence center for PSA, building up expertise in various areas such as autonomous driving and fuel cells Pledging to avoid closing down factories or forced layoffs "The necessary and sustainable reduction of labour costs shall be reached with thoughtful measures such as innovative working time concepts, voluntary programs or early retirement schemes,” the company said in a statement. “PACE! will unleash our full potential. This plan is paramount for the company, to protect our employees against headwinds and turn Opel/Vauxhall into a sustainable, profitable, electrified, and global company. Our future will be secured and we will contribute with German excellence to the Groupe PSA development. The implementation has already started with all teams eager to achieve the objectives,” said Lohscheller in a statement. But will it be enough? As Reuters noted, shares in PSA Group dropped 2.2 percent to €19.68 (about $22.65) after Carlos Tavares said Opel's financial health has been getting worse as PACE! was being drawn up. “The situation gets worse by the day,” Travares said, without going into detail. Source: Autocar, Car, Reuters, Opel Press Release is on Page 2 Opel/Vauxhall Go Profitable, Electric and Global with PACE! Return to profitability by 2020: 2% automotive recurring operating margin, positive operational free cash flow[1] Lower financial break-even point to 800,000 vehicles Electrification and CO2 leadership: All passenger carlines to be electrified by 2024 Improve efficiency towards benchmark levels for manufacturing and logistics cost as well as for wage cost/revenue-ratio Intention to maintain and modernise all plants and to refrain from forced redundancies R&D centre in Rüsselsheim to become a global competence centre for Groupe PSA Enlarge commercial scope: Leverage Opel brand for overseas export opportunities and foster growth of Opel/Vauxhall LCV business PACE! execution to immediately unleash Opel/Vauxhall performance and pave the way to a sustainable future Rüsselsheim. Michael Lohscheller, CEO of Opel Automobile GmbH, today announced the strategic plan PACE! to restore financial fundamentals and enhance sustainable competitiveness and growth. All PACE! initiatives will contribute to the goals of generating a positive operational free cash flow as well as a recurring operating margin for the auto division of 2% in a first phase by 2020 and of 6% by 2026. Combining strengths will unleash annual synergies on Groupe PSA level of €1.1 billion by 2020 and €1.7 billion by 2026. All actions will contribute to a lower financial break-even point for Opel/Vauxhall of 800,000 vehicles, creating a profitable business model whatever the headwinds may be. Having full access to Groupe PSA technologies, Opel/Vauxhall will become a European CO2 leader. By 2024, all European passenger carlines will be electrified – offering a pure battery electric propulsion or plug-in hybrid version alongside efficient internal combustion engines. By 2020, Opel/Vauxhall will have four electrified carlines on the market, including the Grandland X PHEV and the next generation Corsa as a fully electric vehicle. The company will enhance its competitiveness by 2020 e.g. by reducing costs by €700 per car. Efficiency of marketing expenses will be improved by more than 10%. Overall efficiencies will be increased by reducing complexity across all functions with a ratio G&A/revenue moving from 5.6% to 4.7% and an objective to bring the company towards industry benchmark in terms of wage cost/revenue ratio. Optimising R&D and CapEx at 7-8% of automotive revenue, manufacturing and administration processes by 2020 and releasing working capital of €1.2 billion by 2022 will also contribute to seizing synergies. Improved competitiveness of the manufacturing plants will lead to new vehicle allocations that will provide a better utilisation rate for the next decade. The two Groupe PSA platforms CMP and EMP2 will be localised in all Opel/Vauxhall plants. To start with, an EMP2-based SUV is planned for Eisenach in 2019; and an EMP2-based D-segment vehicle is coming to Rüsselsheim. The allocation of new powertrains in Opel/Vauxhall manufacturing sites will accompany the shift from GM to Groupe PSA engines and transmissions. “PACE! will unleash our full potential. This plan is paramount for the company, to protect our employees against headwinds and turn Opel/Vauxhall into a sustainable, profitable, electrified, and global company. Our future will be secured and we will contribute with German excellence to the Groupe PSA development. The implementation has already started with all teams eager to achieve the objectives,” said Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller. The plan is designed with the clear intention to maintain all plants and refrain from forced redundancies in Europe. The necessary and sustainable reduction of labour costs shall be reached with thoughtful measures such as innovative working time concepts, voluntary programs or early retirement schemes. All new Opel/Vauxhall vehicles will be engineered in Rüsselsheim, which will be transformed into a global competence centre for the whole Groupe PSA. First areas of expertise are identified, e.g. fuel cells, certain automated driving technologies and driver assistance developments. This will further guarantee German engineering quality and affordable innovations. Altogether, the number of platforms Opel/Vauxhall uses for its passenger cars will be reduced from currently 9 to 2 by 2024. Furthermore, the powertrain families will be optimised from currently 10 to 4. “Aligning architecture and powertrain families will substantially reduce development and production complexity, thus allowing scale effects and synergies, contributing to overall profitability,” said Lohscheller. Opel/Vauxhall will switch to efficient and flexible Groupe PSA vehicle architectures faster than originally expected. From 2024 onwards, all Opel/Vauxhall passenger car models will be based on joint Groupe PSA architectures. Next to come are the Combo in 2018 and the next generation of the bestselling Corsa in 2019. This course will be steadily continued with one major launch per year. Counting every body style, Opel/Vauxhall will launch 9 new models by 2020. This line-up will enable to increase the pricing power of Opel/Vauxhall brands and reduce the gap against benchmark by four points. Sales growth of the further profiled and strengthened Opel/Vauxhall brands will be supported by initiatives like the start of even more attractive financial offerings as well as full service leasing offers via the Financial Services of Opel and Vauxhall. Furthermore, Opel will enter more than 20 new export markets by 2022. Beyond that, Opel will explore global midterm overseas profitable export opportunities. To foster growth in the financially attractive light commercial vehicle (LCV) business, Opel/Vauxhall will launch new models and enter new markets with the clear goal to increase its LCV sales by 25% by 2020 against 2017. “PACE! has been designed by Opel/Vauxhall for the benefit of our employees as an immediate performance booster,” said Lohscheller.
  2. Ever since PSA Group took ownership of Opel and Vauxhall back in spring, many were wondering what the French automaker had in store. Today at a press conference at Opel's headquarters, Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller unveiled the turnaround called PACE. Here is a summary of PACE, Return Opel and Vauxhall to profit by 2020 Lowering costs on each car built by €700 (about $813) Committed to keeping Vauxhall as a brand for Great Britain Entering 20 new markets by 2022, with Brazil and China topping the list Accelerating the transition from General Motors to PSA Group platforms (originally was planned to finish by 2027, now plan to finish by 2024). This will reduce the number of platforms Opel/Vauxhall use from nine to two. Powertrain families will also decrease from ten to four Nine new models by 2020. This begins with a new Combo van next year and Corsa subcompact in 2019 Launching four electrified models by 2020, with an electrified option being available for each model by 2024 According to Lohscheller, the existing product strategy would not meet the upcoming CO2 targets coming into effect. Thus the decision was made to move up plans for electrification Opel's technical center in Ruesselsheim will engineer all-new Opel/Vauxhall vehicles to have them stand out from their Citroen/DS/Peugeot brethren Ruesselheim will also become a global competence center for PSA, building up expertise in various areas such as autonomous driving and fuel cells Pledging to avoid closing down factories or forced layoffs "The necessary and sustainable reduction of labour costs shall be reached with thoughtful measures such as innovative working time concepts, voluntary programs or early retirement schemes,” the company said in a statement. “PACE! will unleash our full potential. This plan is paramount for the company, to protect our employees against headwinds and turn Opel/Vauxhall into a sustainable, profitable, electrified, and global company. Our future will be secured and we will contribute with German excellence to the Groupe PSA development. The implementation has already started with all teams eager to achieve the objectives,” said Lohscheller in a statement. But will it be enough? As Reuters noted, shares in PSA Group dropped 2.2 percent to €19.68 (about $22.65) after Carlos Tavares said Opel's financial health has been getting worse as PACE! was being drawn up. “The situation gets worse by the day,” Travares said, without going into detail. Source: Autocar, Car, Reuters, Opel Press Release is on Page 2 Opel/Vauxhall Go Profitable, Electric and Global with PACE! Return to profitability by 2020: 2% automotive recurring operating margin, positive operational free cash flow[1] Lower financial break-even point to 800,000 vehicles Electrification and CO2 leadership: All passenger carlines to be electrified by 2024 Improve efficiency towards benchmark levels for manufacturing and logistics cost as well as for wage cost/revenue-ratio Intention to maintain and modernise all plants and to refrain from forced redundancies R&D centre in Rüsselsheim to become a global competence centre for Groupe PSA Enlarge commercial scope: Leverage Opel brand for overseas export opportunities and foster growth of Opel/Vauxhall LCV business PACE! execution to immediately unleash Opel/Vauxhall performance and pave the way to a sustainable future Rüsselsheim. Michael Lohscheller, CEO of Opel Automobile GmbH, today announced the strategic plan PACE! to restore financial fundamentals and enhance sustainable competitiveness and growth. All PACE! initiatives will contribute to the goals of generating a positive operational free cash flow as well as a recurring operating margin for the auto division of 2% in a first phase by 2020 and of 6% by 2026. Combining strengths will unleash annual synergies on Groupe PSA level of €1.1 billion by 2020 and €1.7 billion by 2026. All actions will contribute to a lower financial break-even point for Opel/Vauxhall of 800,000 vehicles, creating a profitable business model whatever the headwinds may be. Having full access to Groupe PSA technologies, Opel/Vauxhall will become a European CO2 leader. By 2024, all European passenger carlines will be electrified – offering a pure battery electric propulsion or plug-in hybrid version alongside efficient internal combustion engines. By 2020, Opel/Vauxhall will have four electrified carlines on the market, including the Grandland X PHEV and the next generation Corsa as a fully electric vehicle. The company will enhance its competitiveness by 2020 e.g. by reducing costs by €700 per car. Efficiency of marketing expenses will be improved by more than 10%. Overall efficiencies will be increased by reducing complexity across all functions with a ratio G&A/revenue moving from 5.6% to 4.7% and an objective to bring the company towards industry benchmark in terms of wage cost/revenue ratio. Optimising R&D and CapEx at 7-8% of automotive revenue, manufacturing and administration processes by 2020 and releasing working capital of €1.2 billion by 2022 will also contribute to seizing synergies. Improved competitiveness of the manufacturing plants will lead to new vehicle allocations that will provide a better utilisation rate for the next decade. The two Groupe PSA platforms CMP and EMP2 will be localised in all Opel/Vauxhall plants. To start with, an EMP2-based SUV is planned for Eisenach in 2019; and an EMP2-based D-segment vehicle is coming to Rüsselsheim. The allocation of new powertrains in Opel/Vauxhall manufacturing sites will accompany the shift from GM to Groupe PSA engines and transmissions. “PACE! will unleash our full potential. This plan is paramount for the company, to protect our employees against headwinds and turn Opel/Vauxhall into a sustainable, profitable, electrified, and global company. Our future will be secured and we will contribute with German excellence to the Groupe PSA development. The implementation has already started with all teams eager to achieve the objectives,” said Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller. The plan is designed with the clear intention to maintain all plants and refrain from forced redundancies in Europe. The necessary and sustainable reduction of labour costs shall be reached with thoughtful measures such as innovative working time concepts, voluntary programs or early retirement schemes. All new Opel/Vauxhall vehicles will be engineered in Rüsselsheim, which will be transformed into a global competence centre for the whole Groupe PSA. First areas of expertise are identified, e.g. fuel cells, certain automated driving technologies and driver assistance developments. This will further guarantee German engineering quality and affordable innovations. Altogether, the number of platforms Opel/Vauxhall uses for its passenger cars will be reduced from currently 9 to 2 by 2024. Furthermore, the powertrain families will be optimised from currently 10 to 4. “Aligning architecture and powertrain families will substantially reduce development and production complexity, thus allowing scale effects and synergies, contributing to overall profitability,” said Lohscheller. Opel/Vauxhall will switch to efficient and flexible Groupe PSA vehicle architectures faster than originally expected. From 2024 onwards, all Opel/Vauxhall passenger car models will be based on joint Groupe PSA architectures. Next to come are the Combo in 2018 and the next generation of the bestselling Corsa in 2019. This course will be steadily continued with one major launch per year. Counting every body style, Opel/Vauxhall will launch 9 new models by 2020. This line-up will enable to increase the pricing power of Opel/Vauxhall brands and reduce the gap against benchmark by four points. Sales growth of the further profiled and strengthened Opel/Vauxhall brands will be supported by initiatives like the start of even more attractive financial offerings as well as full service leasing offers via the Financial Services of Opel and Vauxhall. Furthermore, Opel will enter more than 20 new export markets by 2022. Beyond that, Opel will explore global midterm overseas profitable export opportunities. To foster growth in the financially attractive light commercial vehicle (LCV) business, Opel/Vauxhall will launch new models and enter new markets with the clear goal to increase its LCV sales by 25% by 2020 against 2017. “PACE! has been designed by Opel/Vauxhall for the benefit of our employees as an immediate performance booster,” said Lohscheller. View full article
  3. On Thursday, Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller will be presenting a new restructuring plan for its future under the PSA Group umbrella. Thanks a report from German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, we have some idea of what this plan entails. According to the paper, Opel will be cutting down on the models it offers and begin to focus on high-margin segments. The brand will also be tasked with developing technology for partial and complete electrification of all PSA Group models. To pull this off, Opel’s Rüsselsheim tech center will become the central point for the development of this tech. Other parts of the plan outlined in Frankfurter Allgemeine's report include, Combining the purchasing activities of the two companies Launching Opel into new markets (this was considered to be too taboo for GM) Cut labor costs Reduce the amount of discounting for new vehicles Future models to use platforms, engines, and transmissions from PSA Source: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Automotive News Europe (Subscription Required)
  4. On Thursday, Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller will be presenting a new restructuring plan for its future under the PSA Group umbrella. Thanks a report from German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, we have some idea of what this plan entails. According to the paper, Opel will be cutting down on the models it offers and begin to focus on high-margin segments. The brand will also be tasked with developing technology for partial and complete electrification of all PSA Group models. To pull this off, Opel’s Rüsselsheim tech center will become the central point for the development of this tech. Other parts of the plan outlined in Frankfurter Allgemeine's report include, Combining the purchasing activities of the two companies Launching Opel into new markets (this was considered to be too taboo for GM) Cut labor costs Reduce the amount of discounting for new vehicles Future models to use platforms, engines, and transmissions from PSA Source: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Automotive News Europe (Subscription Required) View full article
  5. As PSA Group - parent company of Citroen, DS, and Peugeot - gradually makes moves into possibly selling vehicles into the U.S., they are taking the next step by engineering their next-generation vehicles to meet U.S. regulations. "That means that from three years down the road we'll be able to push the button, if we decide to do so, in terms of product compliance vis-a-vis the U.S. regulations," said PSA Group CEO Carlos Tavares to Automotive News. Tavares also said PSA has decided which of three brands will be the first appeared in the U.S., but it isn't ready to announce which one. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  6. As PSA Group - parent company of Citroen, DS, and Peugeot - gradually makes moves into possibly selling vehicles into the U.S., they are taking the next step by engineering their next-generation vehicles to meet U.S. regulations. "That means that from three years down the road we'll be able to push the button, if we decide to do so, in terms of product compliance vis-a-vis the U.S. regulations," said PSA Group CEO Carlos Tavares to Automotive News. Tavares also said PSA has decided which of three brands will be the first appeared in the U.S., but it isn't ready to announce which one. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) View full article
  7. Opel and Vauxhall are currently in the process of working on a new business plan for their new owner, PSA Group. Already, it seems one project has been suspended. Auto Express has learned from sources that plans for a flagship SUV have been shelved for the time being. Possibly named Monza, the model would use the Insignia platform and be around the size of a Ford Edge. It seems PSA Group is putting a freeze on various projects that are related in some form to Opel/Vauxhall's former owner, General Motors. Whether or not the Monza is canned or moved to a platform from PSA Group remains to be seen. One thing is clear, changes are already happening. Source: Auto Express
  8. Opel and Vauxhall are currently in the process of working on a new business plan for their new owner, PSA Group. Already, it seems one project has been suspended. Auto Express has learned from sources that plans for a flagship SUV have been shelved for the time being. Possibly named Monza, the model would use the Insignia platform and be around the size of a Ford Edge. It seems PSA Group is putting a freeze on various projects that are related in some form to Opel/Vauxhall's former owner, General Motors. Whether or not the Monza is canned or moved to a platform from PSA Group remains to be seen. One thing is clear, changes are already happening. Source: Auto Express View full article
  9. While the primary focus at PSA Group for the past few months has been purchase of Opel and Vauxhall from General Motors, there has been another project that has been going in the shadows, the return of the French automaker to the U.S. Speaking at the CAR Management Briefing Seminars this week in Traverse City, MI, the CEO of the recently established PSA North America Larry Dominique gave a status update. Back in April, PSA made their first foray into North America with the launch of car-sharing service TravelCar in Los Angeles and San Francisco. The next step is the launch of the Free2Move application into North America. Already launched in Europe, the application allows users to book and pay for a variety of transportation services such as public transit or ride hailing. For Europe, the application has eight different services on offer. Dominique said the app allows PSA Group to "interact with consumers more often than engaging solely in car sales." “We’re going to be starting to engage with millions of Americans. By the time we’re ready to sell cars, selling cars will just be the exclamation point at the end of the sentence,” Dominique told Automotive News on the sidelines. Also in the works is figuring out a dealership with the various services such as financing, servicing, and parts. Building out a dealer network will cost a fair chunk of cash and trying to something different with selling their vehicles is a no go for the time being. “We are looking for progressive, innovative and digital-minded partners,” said Dominique in an effort to reduce costs. “I’m not prepared to talk about how we are going to come to market (in North America) but it will be practical, traditional and use technology.” Dominique is aware of how big of a challenge that he is taking on and they only get one chance to get it right. “We’ve got to be able to do things in a new, innovative way. I don’t have the infrastructure and the legacy in place. We have a chance to do this right once.” Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), Wards Auto
  10. While the primary focus at PSA Group for the past few months has been purchase of Opel and Vauxhall from General Motors, there has been another project that has been going in the shadows, the return of the French automaker to the U.S. Speaking at the CAR Management Briefing Seminars this week in Traverse City, MI, the CEO of the recently established PSA North America Larry Dominique gave a status update. Back in April, PSA made their first foray into North America with the launch of car-sharing service TravelCar in Los Angeles and San Francisco. The next step is the launch of the Free2Move application into North America. Already launched in Europe, the application allows users to book and pay for a variety of transportation services such as public transit or ride hailing. For Europe, the application has eight different services on offer. Dominique said the app allows PSA Group to "interact with consumers more often than engaging solely in car sales." “We’re going to be starting to engage with millions of Americans. By the time we’re ready to sell cars, selling cars will just be the exclamation point at the end of the sentence,” Dominique told Automotive News on the sidelines. Also in the works is figuring out a dealership with the various services such as financing, servicing, and parts. Building out a dealer network will cost a fair chunk of cash and trying to something different with selling their vehicles is a no go for the time being. “We are looking for progressive, innovative and digital-minded partners,” said Dominique in an effort to reduce costs. “I’m not prepared to talk about how we are going to come to market (in North America) but it will be practical, traditional and use technology.” Dominique is aware of how big of a challenge that he is taking on and they only get one chance to get it right. “We’ve got to be able to do things in a new, innovative way. I don’t have the infrastructure and the legacy in place. We have a chance to do this right once.” Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), Wards Auto View full article
  11. General Motors and PSA Group completed the sale of Opel/Vauxhall yesterday, effectively ending the era of GM’s European division. “It is a historic day. We are proud to join Groupe PSA and are now opening a new chapter in our history after 88 years with General Motors. We will continue our path of making technology `made in Germany´ available to everyone. The combination of our strengths will enable us to turn Opel and Vauxhall into a profitable and self-funded business. We have set ourselves the clear target of returning to profitability by 2020,” said Opel Automobile GmbH CEO Michael Lohscheller. As part of the sale, PSA Group paid 1.53 billion for the Opel and Vauxhall brands and $1.06 billion for the European arm of GM Financial. GM is still on the hook for existing pension obligations for Opel - estimated to be around $3.54 billion. The final part of the sale also marks some key changes of Opel and Vauxhall's leadership. Four new people - Christian Müller, Rémi Girardon, Philippe de Rovira, and Michelle Wen - will be joining the company's management. What happens next? The new management team will begin working on a new plan for the future of the two brands. The ultimate goal is to have Opel and Vauxhall return to profitability by 2020. Source: Reuters, Opel Press Release is on Page 2 Birth of a European Champion: Opel and Vauxhall join Groupe PSA Opel and Vauxhall to be operated as true iconic German and British brands New performance plan to be presented in 100 days: to generate a positive operational free cash flow by 2020 as well as an operating margin of 2% by 2020 and 6% by 2026 Four new team members to join the leadership team Rüsselsheim. The sale of Opel Automobile GmbH with its brands Opel and Vauxhall by General Motors to Groupe PSA has been finalized now. “It is a historic day,” said Opel Automobile GmbH CEO Michael Lohscheller. “We are proud to join Groupe PSA and are now opening a new chapter in our history after 88 years with General Motors. We will continue our path of making technology `made in Germany´ available to everyone. The combination of our strengths will enable us to turn Opel and Vauxhall into a profitable and self-funded business. We have set ourselves the clear target of returning to profitability by 2020.” “We are witnessing the birth of a true European champion today,” emphasized PSA Chairman of the board Carlos Tavares. “We will assist Opel and Vauxhall’s return to profitability and aim to set new industry benchmarks together. We will unleash the power of these iconic brands and the huge potential of its existing talents. Opel will remain German, Vauxhall will remain British. They are the perfect fit to our existing portfolio of French brands Peugeot, Citroën and DS Automobiles.” The market share of the enlarged Groupe PSA is now around 17 percent in Europe, making it the continent’s second largest carmaker with first or second place in main markets. As already assured when the contract was signed in March, all employee codetermination rights will remain unchanged. The Opel/Vauxhall management team will work on a plan for the future in the next 100 days. “We are eager to build the plan with PSA’s support and obviously together with our partners from the Works Council and the unions,” said Opel CEO Lohscheller. Synergies within the Groupe PSA, for example in purchasing and development, are set to play a major part. The combined entity will unlock substantial economies of scale and synergies in purchasing, manufacturing and R&D estimated at €1.7 Bn at run rate. The goal is to generate a positive operational free cash flow by 2020 as well as an operating margin of two percent by 2020 and six percent by 2026. Today’s start of a new era is accompanied by some important leadership changes. “I am happy to announce that four new members will join my management team,” said CEO Lohscheller: Christian Müller, previously Vice President Global Propulsion Systems – Europe and with Opel since 1996, will succeed William F. Bertagni as Vice President Engineering. He will integrate engineering and powertrain in one department. Rémi Girardon, previously Senior Vice President Group Industrial Strategy at Groupe PSA, will succeed Philip R. Kienle as Vice President Manufacturing. Philippe de Rovira, previously Group Controller at Groupe PSA, will become the new CFO of Opel, following Michael Lohscheller. Michelle Wen, Group Supply Chain Management Network Director at Vodafone Procurement, will be joining the Opel leadership team effective September 1 replacing Katherine Worthen currently Vice President Purchasing and Supply Chain. All other moves are with immediate effect. “We thank Katherine Worthen, William F. Bertagni and Philip Kienle for all their contributions to Opel/Vauxhall and wish them all the best for the next chapter of their careers within General Motors,” said Opel CEO Lohscheller. “And we cordially welcome Michelle Wen from Vodafone as well as Remi Girardon and Philippe de Rovira from Groupe PSA. I am looking forward to working with these new team members who will reinforce the potential of our leadership team.” Going forward, Michael Lohscheller is planning with a much leaner management structure, including the number of direct reports. “We are reducing complexity and increasing speed,” said Lohscheller. “I am looking forward to shaping the next chapter of Opel/Vauxhall with the new management team and leading our company into a successful future. The owners and the employees will not be the only ones to benefit from ever stronger Opel and Vauxhall brands – our customers will do so too.” PSA and Opel/Vauxhall have been working together since 2012. The cooperation so far includes four vehicles from Opel. The first model, the Opel Crossland X, has been available at dealerships since the end of June. The Opel Grandland X SUV in the next higher segment follows in the fall. The successor of the Opel Combo light commercial vehicle will come onto the market next year and as of 2019 the next generation of the best-selling Opel Corsa will be launched. Opel/Vauxhall and Groupe PSA will continue to work with General Motors in the future. In addition to development in the area of electric propulsion, Opel plants will continue to produce vehicles for the GM brands Buick and Holden. In parallel, the acquisition of GM Financial's European operations is under way, subject to validation by the different regulatory authorities’ review and is scheduled for the second half of 2017.
  12. General Motors and PSA Group completed the sale of Opel/Vauxhall yesterday, effectively ending the era of GM’s European division. “It is a historic day. We are proud to join Groupe PSA and are now opening a new chapter in our history after 88 years with General Motors. We will continue our path of making technology `made in Germany´ available to everyone. The combination of our strengths will enable us to turn Opel and Vauxhall into a profitable and self-funded business. We have set ourselves the clear target of returning to profitability by 2020,” said Opel Automobile GmbH CEO Michael Lohscheller. As part of the sale, PSA Group paid 1.53 billion for the Opel and Vauxhall brands and $1.06 billion for the European arm of GM Financial. GM is still on the hook for existing pension obligations for Opel - estimated to be around $3.54 billion. The final part of the sale also marks some key changes of Opel and Vauxhall's leadership. Four new people - Christian Müller, Rémi Girardon, Philippe de Rovira, and Michelle Wen - will be joining the company's management. What happens next? The new management team will begin working on a new plan for the future of the two brands. The ultimate goal is to have Opel and Vauxhall return to profitability by 2020. Source: Reuters, Opel Press Release is on Page 2 Birth of a European Champion: Opel and Vauxhall join Groupe PSA Opel and Vauxhall to be operated as true iconic German and British brands New performance plan to be presented in 100 days: to generate a positive operational free cash flow by 2020 as well as an operating margin of 2% by 2020 and 6% by 2026 Four new team members to join the leadership team Rüsselsheim. The sale of Opel Automobile GmbH with its brands Opel and Vauxhall by General Motors to Groupe PSA has been finalized now. “It is a historic day,” said Opel Automobile GmbH CEO Michael Lohscheller. “We are proud to join Groupe PSA and are now opening a new chapter in our history after 88 years with General Motors. We will continue our path of making technology `made in Germany´ available to everyone. The combination of our strengths will enable us to turn Opel and Vauxhall into a profitable and self-funded business. We have set ourselves the clear target of returning to profitability by 2020.” “We are witnessing the birth of a true European champion today,” emphasized PSA Chairman of the board Carlos Tavares. “We will assist Opel and Vauxhall’s return to profitability and aim to set new industry benchmarks together. We will unleash the power of these iconic brands and the huge potential of its existing talents. Opel will remain German, Vauxhall will remain British. They are the perfect fit to our existing portfolio of French brands Peugeot, Citroën and DS Automobiles.” The market share of the enlarged Groupe PSA is now around 17 percent in Europe, making it the continent’s second largest carmaker with first or second place in main markets. As already assured when the contract was signed in March, all employee codetermination rights will remain unchanged. The Opel/Vauxhall management team will work on a plan for the future in the next 100 days. “We are eager to build the plan with PSA’s support and obviously together with our partners from the Works Council and the unions,” said Opel CEO Lohscheller. Synergies within the Groupe PSA, for example in purchasing and development, are set to play a major part. The combined entity will unlock substantial economies of scale and synergies in purchasing, manufacturing and R&D estimated at €1.7 Bn at run rate. The goal is to generate a positive operational free cash flow by 2020 as well as an operating margin of two percent by 2020 and six percent by 2026. Today’s start of a new era is accompanied by some important leadership changes. “I am happy to announce that four new members will join my management team,” said CEO Lohscheller: Christian Müller, previously Vice President Global Propulsion Systems – Europe and with Opel since 1996, will succeed William F. Bertagni as Vice President Engineering. He will integrate engineering and powertrain in one department. Rémi Girardon, previously Senior Vice President Group Industrial Strategy at Groupe PSA, will succeed Philip R. Kienle as Vice President Manufacturing. Philippe de Rovira, previously Group Controller at Groupe PSA, will become the new CFO of Opel, following Michael Lohscheller. Michelle Wen, Group Supply Chain Management Network Director at Vodafone Procurement, will be joining the Opel leadership team effective September 1 replacing Katherine Worthen currently Vice President Purchasing and Supply Chain. All other moves are with immediate effect. “We thank Katherine Worthen, William F. Bertagni and Philip Kienle for all their contributions to Opel/Vauxhall and wish them all the best for the next chapter of their careers within General Motors,” said Opel CEO Lohscheller. “And we cordially welcome Michelle Wen from Vodafone as well as Remi Girardon and Philippe de Rovira from Groupe PSA. I am looking forward to working with these new team members who will reinforce the potential of our leadership team.” Going forward, Michael Lohscheller is planning with a much leaner management structure, including the number of direct reports. “We are reducing complexity and increasing speed,” said Lohscheller. “I am looking forward to shaping the next chapter of Opel/Vauxhall with the new management team and leading our company into a successful future. The owners and the employees will not be the only ones to benefit from ever stronger Opel and Vauxhall brands – our customers will do so too.” PSA and Opel/Vauxhall have been working together since 2012. The cooperation so far includes four vehicles from Opel. The first model, the Opel Crossland X, has been available at dealerships since the end of June. The Opel Grandland X SUV in the next higher segment follows in the fall. The successor of the Opel Combo light commercial vehicle will come onto the market next year and as of 2019 the next generation of the best-selling Opel Corsa will be launched. Opel/Vauxhall and Groupe PSA will continue to work with General Motors in the future. In addition to development in the area of electric propulsion, Opel plants will continue to produce vehicles for the GM brands Buick and Holden. In parallel, the acquisition of GM Financial's European operations is under way, subject to validation by the different regulatory authorities’ review and is scheduled for the second half of 2017. View full article
  13. If General Motors and PSA Group were hoping to have a smooth sale of Opel, they were dashed this week. Both Automobilwoche and German newspaper Allgemeine Zeitung report Opel's work council and German labor union IG Metall have some specific demands for workers at Opel's development center in Rüsselsheim. The two parties want a guarantee that 7,700 workers will keep their jobs at the center and that continue performing work for GM until 2020 - which could account for 30 percent of the development center's output. There are also some disagreements on vehicle development. PSA Group wants the next-generation Corsa subcompact to use one their platforms, while Opel wants to keep the current platform and also wants to develop an SUV based on the Insignia platform. Until this issue can get resolved, GM and PSA Group cannot move forward with the Opel sale. Originally, GM was planning to move their European assets into a new company titled Opel Automobile GmbH. But plans for this have been postponed. "Only when these service contracts are signed and the new ITEZ contract is signed can the business transition come," an insider told Allgemeine Zeitung. A spokeswoman for the works council told Automobilwoche that there was no disagreement between the various parties on this issue. But the complexity of this matter has pushed back plans for workers to ratify the agreement. Information sessions about the agreement that were supposed to take place this week have been reportedly canceled. Source: Automobilwoche, Allgemeine Zeitung
  14. If General Motors and PSA Group were hoping to have a smooth sale of Opel, they were dashed this week. Both Automobilwoche and German newspaper Allgemeine Zeitung report Opel's work council and German labor union IG Metall have some specific demands for workers at Opel's development center in Rüsselsheim. The two parties want a guarantee that 7,700 workers will keep their jobs at the center and that continue performing work for GM until 2020 - which could account for 30 percent of the development center's output. There are also some disagreements on vehicle development. PSA Group wants the next-generation Corsa subcompact to use one their platforms, while Opel wants to keep the current platform and also wants to develop an SUV based on the Insignia platform. Until this issue can get resolved, GM and PSA Group cannot move forward with the Opel sale. Originally, GM was planning to move their European assets into a new company titled Opel Automobile GmbH. But plans for this have been postponed. "Only when these service contracts are signed and the new ITEZ contract is signed can the business transition come," an insider told Allgemeine Zeitung. A spokeswoman for the works council told Automobilwoche that there was no disagreement between the various parties on this issue. But the complexity of this matter has pushed back plans for workers to ratify the agreement. Information sessions about the agreement that were supposed to take place this week have been reportedly canceled. Source: Automobilwoche, Allgemeine Zeitung View full article
  15. PSA Group is slowing making end roads into U.S. as part of their 10-year plan. We have already reported on their carsharing service, TravelCar that will be launching in select markets this month. Now, the French automaker has taken the next step by announcing former Nissan and TrueCar executive Larry Dominique as a Senior Vice President of PSA North America. Automotive News reports Dominique's role will first deal with the car-sharing aspects before starting to make progress on one or all of the brands in the U.S. “This is a market that, as a full-line automaker, you need to be part of. But this is a 10-year project. It’s not about jumping in and creating market share as quickly as possible.” said Dominique. “Positioning a brand in the U.S. marketplace -- which is very crowded today -- is going to take patience, analysis and data. And it’s going to take careful execution. That’s why we’re not rushing into this. There are a lot of unanswered questions facing Dominique such as which brands will be sold in the U.S. and how will the vehicles be sold - dealer network or some other way. “It’s going to be a significant amount of money to re-enter the market. But we haven’t set a number. If we can find more efficient ways to market and sell our vehicles -- whether it’s in a traditional partnership with investors or not -- those are things that can heavily influence the cost of coming to market,” said Dominique. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) View full article
  16. PSA Group is slowing making end roads into U.S. as part of their 10-year plan. We have already reported on their carsharing service, TravelCar that will be launching in select markets this month. Now, the French automaker has taken the next step by announcing former Nissan and TrueCar executive Larry Dominique as a Senior Vice President of PSA North America. Automotive News reports Dominique's role will first deal with the car-sharing aspects before starting to make progress on one or all of the brands in the U.S. “This is a market that, as a full-line automaker, you need to be part of. But this is a 10-year project. It’s not about jumping in and creating market share as quickly as possible.” said Dominique. “Positioning a brand in the U.S. marketplace -- which is very crowded today -- is going to take patience, analysis and data. And it’s going to take careful execution. That’s why we’re not rushing into this. There are a lot of unanswered questions facing Dominique such as which brands will be sold in the U.S. and how will the vehicles be sold - dealer network or some other way. “It’s going to be a significant amount of money to re-enter the market. But we haven’t set a number. If we can find more efficient ways to market and sell our vehicles -- whether it’s in a traditional partnership with investors or not -- those are things that can heavily influence the cost of coming to market,” said Dominique. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  17. One of the big questions facing the sale of Opel to PSA Group is what will happen in the future. Opel CEO Karl-Thomas Neumann spilled some of the beans in an interview with German magazine Auto Motor und Sport. Neumann will remain the CEO of Opel, but tells the magazine that he will work closely with PSA's CEO Carlos Tavares. "It is important for me to stand before employees and show leadership. I have done this in the past and will continue to do so," said Neumann. "I think we have great respect for each other. That is why I see a good foundation for continued cooperation," the magazine quoted Neumann as saying. Opel will also have its own leadership, and the ability to design and develop its own cars. The only difference is that it will be using platforms from PSA. Neumann says it will take several years for the brand to transition from GM to PSA platforms. The main priority is to get Opel profitable once again. This will be accomplished by deepening cooperation with PSA and lowering development costs. Opel is also planning their largest product offensive with 7 new models being launched in the near future. They include a new SUV that will serve as the second flagship model alongside the new Insignia and new electric models. Neumann declined to comment on a report he was planning to make Opel an electric-vehicle only brand. Interestingly, Neumann revealed that he was very skeptical about introducing Opel into the Chinese marketplace. "This is a complete misunderstanding of the situation. PSA has long since ceased to be sick, but has recovered very strongly and just presented a super result for 2016. And we are clearly on the road to recovery. From a strong and a well-being, two might now become strong." Source: Auto Motor und Sport
  18. One of the big questions facing the sale of Opel to PSA Group is what will happen in the future. Opel CEO Karl-Thomas Neumann spilled some of the beans in an interview with German magazine Auto Motor und Sport. Neumann will remain the CEO of Opel, but tells the magazine that he will work closely with PSA's CEO Carlos Tavares. "It is important for me to stand before employees and show leadership. I have done this in the past and will continue to do so," said Neumann. "I think we have great respect for each other. That is why I see a good foundation for continued cooperation," the magazine quoted Neumann as saying. Opel will also have its own leadership, and the ability to design and develop its own cars. The only difference is that it will be using platforms from PSA. Neumann says it will take several years for the brand to transition from GM to PSA platforms. The main priority is to get Opel profitable once again. This will be accomplished by deepening cooperation with PSA and lowering development costs. Opel is also planning their largest product offensive with 7 new models being launched in the near future. They include a new SUV that will serve as the second flagship model alongside the new Insignia and new electric models. Neumann declined to comment on a report he was planning to make Opel an electric-vehicle only brand. Interestingly, Neumann revealed that he was very skeptical about introducing Opel into the Chinese marketplace. "This is a complete misunderstanding of the situation. PSA has long since ceased to be sick, but has recovered very strongly and just presented a super result for 2016. And we are clearly on the road to recovery. From a strong and a well-being, two might now become strong." Source: Auto Motor und Sport View full article
  19. Last week saw the PSA Group (parent company of Citroen and Peugeot) purchasing Opel and Vauxhall from General Motors for $2.3 billion. This move would make the PSA Group the second-largest automaker in Europe. We already know some of the plans that PSA Group has for their new brands such as setting operating profit targets of 2 percent in 2020 (jumps to 6 percent by 2026) and the next-generation Opel/Vauxhall Corsa being the first new product developed with PSA. But as we alluded to in the original news story, there are a lot of questions that remain unanswered such as possible job cuts or what happens to Buick and Holden as they share products with Opel. I have been doing a bit of thinking on these and some other questions. The end result is this piece. 1: Will there be job cuts and plant closures? In 2016, PSA Group employed 172,000 people worldwide. With the acquisition of Opel and Vauxhall, they will be adding close to 42,000 workers (the majority of those from Opel). The number of plants will also increase to 28 due to this purchase. Sooner or later, PSA Group is going have to make cuts. During the press conference announcing the deal, PSA Group CEO Carlos Tavares said the company “would honor existing labor agreements and closing plants is a “simplistic” solution.” That may be true for now, but this might change within the coming years. Some analysts believe PSA Group will close two to three plants within five years. The most likely place where the closures and layoffs could take place is in Great Britain. The reason as we talked about in a story back in February deals with the decision made by British citizens last year with leaving the European Union. “By leaving, the country would lose access to the EU Single Market which guarantees unconstrained trade across the member states. It would mean various countries would be leveraging tariffs on British-made goods, making production in the country less competitive.” Former British member of parliament and business secretary Sir Vincent Cable outlined how bad this decision looks for Vauxhall in a recent interview on BBC Radio 4. There could be a way that the British Government could at least stall the possible closures. Back in October, the British Government worked out a secret deal with Nissan to keep them investing in British car production at their plant in Sunderland. This deal caused an uproar as the details were kept as many believed the British Government would be handing over money to keep Nissan happy. But sources told British newspaper The Independent back in January that the deal had no mention of money. It could be that the British Government could do something similar for PSA Group to keep jobs, but it is too early to say if this will happen or not. 2: Will this affect PSA’s plans of entering the U.S.? Probably not. Let’s remember that PSA Group is working through a ten-year plan that may or may not see the return of the Citroen and Peugeot, along with the introduction of DS to the country. Already, the first part of this plan is gearing up for the launch of a car sharing service next month. There is also extensive research going on into the U.S. marketplace. But could there be a possibility of Opel or Vauxhall vehicles being sold here? It would not be surprising if there isn’t talk about this at PSA Group’s HQ. But there is a slight complication to this idea. As part of the sale, PSA Group cannot sell any Opel vehicles developed by GM anywhere in various markets outside of Europe (China and U.S. for example) until they transition to PSA platforms. That means a number of models such as the Astra, Insignia, and Mokka are out of the question for the time being. If Opel was chosen to be one of the brands PSA would sell in the U.S., they might not have a full line of vehicles to sell due to this clause. 3: What does the future hold for Buick and Holden? If there are some losers from the sale of Opel, it has to Buick and Holden. Buick has found some success with Opel products as the Encore (rebadged Mokka) has become one the best-selling models for the brand. Holden is getting a shot in the arm as the Astra will hopefully help their fortunes in the compact space, and the new Commodore (rebadged Insignia) has a tough task ahead of it with living up to an iconic name. For the time being, Opel will continue supplying models to both brands. It is what happens in the future that many are concerned about. During the Geneva Motor Show, GM President Dan Ammann said something very interest to Australian journalists about the future of Holden’s products. This makes sense as the Astra was only launched and the Commodore is getting ready to go on sale. But I wouldn’t be surprised if talks begin very soon about this very topic. The same talks are likely to begin at Buick soon where they face the same issue for the Regal and Encore. Our hunch is Buick might have the easier time of two. The Encore would continue on since it shares the same platform as the Chevrolet Trax. As for the Regal, it could leave Buick’s lineup once the next-generation model runs its course. 4: Does GM lose anything with this deal? There has been a lot of talk about how much money will be freed up from the sale of Opel/Vauxhall for GM, along with making a bit more profit. But it comes at a cost that could hurt GM down the road. The recent crop of compact and midsize sedans from GM owe a lot to Opel’s engineering knowledge. Vehicles that excel in driving dynamics and fuel economy are worth their weight in gold when it comes to the European marketplace. As we know, one part of why GM went into bankruptcy was the lack of competitive small and midsize cars that got good fuel economy. Opel would prove to be GM’s savior with this key knowledge. Right now, compacts and midsize sedans aren’t selling as consumers are directing their attention to crossovers and SUVs. This is due in part to lower gas prices. But sooner or later, the price of gas will go back up and cause many to go back to smaller vehicles. With talk about GM scaling back on their small and midsize car lineup, this decision could have consequences down the road. Plus with Opel out of the picture, GM doesn’t have someone it can rely on to get these models back to the forefront. We can hope GM’s North American office has learned some stuff when working with their European counterparts.
  20. Last week saw the PSA Group (parent company of Citroen and Peugeot) purchasing Opel and Vauxhall from General Motors for $2.3 billion. This move would make the PSA Group the second-largest automaker in Europe. We already know some of the plans that PSA Group has for their new brands such as setting operating profit targets of 2 percent in 2020 (jumps to 6 percent by 2026) and the next-generation Opel/Vauxhall Corsa being the first new product developed with PSA. But as we alluded to in the original news story, there are a lot of questions that remain unanswered such as possible job cuts or what happens to Buick and Holden as they share products with Opel. I have been doing a bit of thinking on these and some other questions. The end result is this piece. 1: Will there be job cuts and plant closures? In 2016, PSA Group employed 172,000 people worldwide. With the acquisition of Opel and Vauxhall, they will be adding close to 42,000 workers (the majority of those from Opel). The number of plants will also increase to 28 due to this purchase. Sooner or later, PSA Group is going have to make cuts. During the press conference announcing the deal, PSA Group CEO Carlos Tavares said the company “would honor existing labor agreements and closing plants is a “simplistic” solution.” That may be true for now, but this might change within the coming years. Some analysts believe PSA Group will close two to three plants within five years. The most likely place where the closures and layoffs could take place is in Great Britain. The reason as we talked about in a story back in February deals with the decision made by British citizens last year with leaving the European Union. “By leaving, the country would lose access to the EU Single Market which guarantees unconstrained trade across the member states. It would mean various countries would be leveraging tariffs on British-made goods, making production in the country less competitive.” Former British member of parliament and business secretary Sir Vincent Cable outlined how bad this decision looks for Vauxhall in a recent interview on BBC Radio 4. There could be a way that the British Government could at least stall the possible closures. Back in October, the British Government worked out a secret deal with Nissan to keep them investing in British car production at their plant in Sunderland. This deal caused an uproar as the details were kept as many believed the British Government would be handing over money to keep Nissan happy. But sources told British newspaper The Independent back in January that the deal had no mention of money. It could be that the British Government could do something similar for PSA Group to keep jobs, but it is too early to say if this will happen or not. 2: Will this affect PSA’s plans of entering the U.S.? Probably not. Let’s remember that PSA Group is working through a ten-year plan that may or may not see the return of the Citroen and Peugeot, along with the introduction of DS to the country. Already, the first part of this plan is gearing up for the launch of a car sharing service next month. There is also extensive research going on into the U.S. marketplace. But could there be a possibility of Opel or Vauxhall vehicles being sold here? It would not be surprising if there isn’t talk about this at PSA Group’s HQ. But there is a slight complication to this idea. As part of the sale, PSA Group cannot sell any Opel vehicles developed by GM anywhere in various markets outside of Europe (China and U.S. for example) until they transition to PSA platforms. That means a number of models such as the Astra, Insignia, and Mokka are out of the question for the time being. If Opel was chosen to be one of the brands PSA would sell in the U.S., they might not have a full line of vehicles to sell due to this clause. 3: What does the future hold for Buick and Holden? If there are some losers from the sale of Opel, it has to Buick and Holden. Buick has found some success with Opel products as the Encore (rebadged Mokka) has become one the best-selling models for the brand. Holden is getting a shot in the arm as the Astra will hopefully help their fortunes in the compact space, and the new Commodore (rebadged Insignia) has a tough task ahead of it with living up to an iconic name. For the time being, Opel will continue supplying models to both brands. It is what happens in the future that many are concerned about. During the Geneva Motor Show, GM President Dan Ammann said something very interest to Australian journalists about the future of Holden’s products. This makes sense as the Astra was only launched and the Commodore is getting ready to go on sale. But I wouldn’t be surprised if talks begin very soon about this very topic. The same talks are likely to begin at Buick soon where they face the same issue for the Regal and Encore. Our hunch is Buick might have the easier time of two. The Encore would continue on since it shares the same platform as the Chevrolet Trax. As for the Regal, it could leave Buick’s lineup once the next-generation model runs its course. 4: Does GM lose anything with this deal? There has been a lot of talk about how much money will be freed up from the sale of Opel/Vauxhall for GM, along with making a bit more profit. But it comes at a cost that could hurt GM down the road. The recent crop of compact and midsize sedans from GM owe a lot to Opel’s engineering knowledge. Vehicles that excel in driving dynamics and fuel economy are worth their weight in gold when it comes to the European marketplace. As we know, one part of why GM went into bankruptcy was the lack of competitive small and midsize cars that got good fuel economy. Opel would prove to be GM’s savior with this key knowledge. Right now, compacts and midsize sedans aren’t selling as consumers are directing their attention to crossovers and SUVs. This is due in part to lower gas prices. But sooner or later, the price of gas will go back up and cause many to go back to smaller vehicles. With talk about GM scaling back on their small and midsize car lineup, this decision could have consequences down the road. Plus with Opel out of the picture, GM doesn’t have someone it can rely on to get these models back to the forefront. We can hope GM’s North American office has learned some stuff when working with their European counterparts. View full article
  21. Holden was relying on Opel to help supply its upcoming lineup with models such as the Astra and Insignia rebadged as the Commodore. But with the sale of Opel and Vauxhall to PSA Group, the future of Holden's lineup hangs in the balance. But GM is still committed to the Australian brand and the sale of Opel should not have any impact in the near future according to GM president Dan Ammann. “What I want to emphasise is we are 100 per cent committed to the business in Australia and New Zealand, and we have a lot of exciting things in the pipeline. It’s going to be a really good period of time for the business down there,” said Ammann. "As a lot of you know there are a lot of people in the business at General Motors that have a lot of history and linkage to Holden and there's nothing we want to see more than seeing the business prosper down there. So we're really committed to making the business work down there." For the time being, Holden will be getting the Astra and Commodore from Opel as part of the deal between GM and PSA. Ammann did admit that decisions concerning long-term product plans for Holden are up in the air. "So no specific decisions have been taken on that front. We have, I'd say as a result of yesterday's announcement, more not less opportunities going forward," said Ammann. "Clearly the current models that are just launching will run through their full lifecycle and what we do after that is yet to be determined." Source: CarAdvice , Drive.com.au, Wheels View full article
  22. Holden was relying on Opel to help supply its upcoming lineup with models such as the Astra and Insignia rebadged as the Commodore. But with the sale of Opel and Vauxhall to PSA Group, the future of Holden's lineup hangs in the balance. But GM is still committed to the Australian brand and the sale of Opel should not have any impact in the near future according to GM president Dan Ammann. “What I want to emphasise is we are 100 per cent committed to the business in Australia and New Zealand, and we have a lot of exciting things in the pipeline. It’s going to be a really good period of time for the business down there,” said Ammann. "As a lot of you know there are a lot of people in the business at General Motors that have a lot of history and linkage to Holden and there's nothing we want to see more than seeing the business prosper down there. So we're really committed to making the business work down there." For the time being, Holden will be getting the Astra and Commodore from Opel as part of the deal between GM and PSA. Ammann did admit that decisions concerning long-term product plans for Holden are up in the air. "So no specific decisions have been taken on that front. We have, I'd say as a result of yesterday's announcement, more not less opportunities going forward," said Ammann. "Clearly the current models that are just launching will run through their full lifecycle and what we do after that is yet to be determined." Source: CarAdvice , Drive.com.au, Wheels
  23. It is now official. This morning, PSA Group has agreed to buy Opel and Vauxhall from General Motors for 2.2 billion euros (about $2.3 billion). The deal is comprised of a 1.8 billion euros ($1.9 billion) payment for Opel and Vauxhall, along with a stake in Opel's financing arm. This makes PSA Group the second-largest automaker in Europe. “It gives us the opportunity to become a real European champion. Our plan is to build a common future for Opel and Vauxhall and fix the existing issues,” said PSA Chief Executive Officer Carlos Tavares. Those existing issues include Opel and Vauxhall never breaking even for GM. Over the past two decades, Opel and Vauxhall have lost almost $20 billion. In 2016, the division was projected to break even, but the complications of Great Britain leaving the EU meant they posted a loss of $257 million. "The way I look at this is positioning Opel-Vauxhall to be incredibly successful in the future," said GM CEO Mary Barra when asked by a reporter if she was relieved about the sale of Opel and Vauxhall. "General Motors doesn't have to be relieved. They can be proud of giving Opel-Vauxhall a better future," said Tavares. PSA Group is aiming to make Opel and Vauxhall profitable once again, with operating profit targets of 2 percent in 2020 and 6 percent by 2026. These targets will be reached by joint cost savings of 1.7 billion euros (about $1.8 billion) by spreading the costs of developing new vehicles and sharing purchasing costs. General Motors won't be fully cutting its ties with Opel and Vauxhall for the time being. GM has allowed PSA Group to license technology rights to keep selling current models (including the upcoming Insignia) until they transition onto PSA platforms. According to Reuters, the next-generation Opel/Vauxhall Corsa will be the first PSA developed model. GM will also collaborate with PSA on various projects such as hydrogen fuel cells. Finally, GM will pay PSA 3 billion euros ($3.18 billion) to settle transferred pension obligations. But there are still a number of unanswered questions with this deal. The big one deals with job cuts and plant closures. With this deal, PSA group will add roughly 38,000 workers and 10 production facilities. Some analysts believe that PSA Group will close two to three plants within the next five years, with the possibility of those closures taking place in Great Britain due to Brexit. Taveres has said that the automaker would honor existing labor agreements and closing plants is a “simplistic” solution. “We don’t need to shut down plants,” said Tavares. Second is what will happen for Buick and Holden when models they share with Opel transition to PSA platforms. Both Buick and Holden will be getting the next-generation Insignia as the Regal and Commodore. Buick also gets the Opel Mokka to sell as the Encore, while Holden sells the Astra compact. Finally, there is the question about PSA Group's plans to re-enter the U.S. How does the purchase of Opel and Vauxhall affect their plans? Source: Bloomberg, Reuters, Automotive News (Subscription Required), General Motors, PSA Group Press Release is on Page 2 Opel/Vauxhall to join PSA Group Establishes PSA Group as #2 in Europe. This strong and balanced presence in its home markets will serve as the basis of profitable growth worldwide Joint venture in auto financing with BNP Paribas to support development of Opel/Vauxhall brands €2.2 Bn transaction advances GM’s transformation and unlocks shareholder value through disciplined capital allocation Detroit and Paris – General Motors Co. (NYSE:GM) and PSA Group (Paris:UG) today announced an agreement under which GM’s Opel/Vauxhall subsidiary and GM Financial’s European operations will join the PSA Group in a transaction valuing these activities at €1.3 Bn and €0.9 Bn, respectively. With the addition of Opel/Vauxhall, which generated revenue of €17.7 Bn in 20161, PSA will become the second-largest automotive company in Europe, with a 17% market share2. Creates sound European foundation for PSA to support its worldwide profitable growth “We are proud to join forces with Opel/Vauxhall and are deeply committed to continuing to develop this great company and accelerating its turnaround,” said Carlos Tavares, chairman of the Managing Board of PSA. “We respect all that Opel/Vauxhall’s talented people have achieved as well as the company’s fine brands and strong heritage. We intend to manage PSA and Opel/Vauxhall capitalizing on their respective brand identities. Having already created together winning products for the European market, we know that Opel/Vauxhall is the right partner. We see this as a natural extension of our relationship and are eager to take it to the next level.” “We are confident that the Opel/Vauxhall turnaround will significantly accelerate with our support, while respecting the commitments made by GM to the Opel/Vauxhall employees,” continued Mr. Tavares. Advances GM’s Transformation and Unlocks Value “We are very pleased that together, GM, our valued colleagues at Opel/Vauxhall and PSA have created a new opportunity to enhance the long-term performance of our respective companies by building on the success of our prior alliance”, said Mary T. Barra, GM chairman and chief executive officer. “For GM, this represents another major step in the ongoing work that is driving our improved performance and accelerating our momentum. We are reshaping our company and delivering consistent, record results for our owners through disciplined capital allocation to our higher-return investments in our core automotive business and in new technologies that are enabling us to lead the future of personal mobility. “We believe this new chapter puts Opel and Vauxhall in an even stronger position for the long term and we look forward to our participation in the future success and strong value-creation potential of PSA through our economic interest and continued collaboration on current and exciting new projects,” Ms. Barra concluded. Strengthens Each Company for the Long Term The transaction will allow substantial economies of scale and synergies in purchasing, manufacturing and R&D. Annual synergies of €1.7 Bn are expected by 2026 – of which a significant part is expected to be delivered by 2020, accelerating Opel/Vauxhall’s turnaround. Leveraging the successful partnership with GM, PSA expects Opel/Vauxhall to reach a recurring operating margin3 of 2% by 2020 and 6% by 2026, and to generate a positive operational free cash flow4 by 2020. PSA, together with BNP Paribas, will also acquire all of GM Financial’s European operations through a newly formed 50%/50% joint venture that will retain GM Financial’s current European platform and team. This joint venture will be fully consolidated by BNP Paribas and accounted under the equity method by PSA. The transaction is another step in GM’s ongoing work to transform the company, which has delivered three years of record performance and a strong 2017 outlook, and returned significant capital to shareholders. It will strengthen GM’s core business, support its continued deployment of resources to higher-return opportunities including in advanced technologies driving the future, and unlock significant value for shareholders. By immediately improving EBIT-adjusted, EBIT-adjusted margins and adjusted automotive free cash flow and de-risking the balance sheet, the transaction will enable GM to lower the cash balance requirement under its capital allocation framework by $2 Bn, which it intends to use to accelerate share repurchases, subject to market conditions. GM will also participate in the future success of the combined entity through its ownership of warrants to purchase shares of PSA. GM and PSA also expect to collaborate in the further deployment of electrification technologies and existing supply agreements for Holden and certain Buick models will continue, and PSA may potentially source long-term supply of fuel cell systems from the GM/Honda joint venture. Additional Information Terms of the Agreement Opel/Vauxhall automotive operations will be acquired by PSA for €1.3 Bn. GM Financial’s European operations will be jointly acquired by PSA and BNP Paribas for 0.8 times their pro forma book value at the closing of the transaction, or approximately €0.9 Bn. The transaction has a total value of €2.2 Bn, for Opel/Vauxhall automotive operations and 100% of GM Financial’s European operations. The transaction value for PSA, including Opel/Vauxhall and 50% of GM Financial’s European operations, will be €1.8 Bn. In connection with this transaction, GM or its affiliates will subscribe warrants for €0.65 Bn. These warrants have a nine-year maturity and are exercisable at any time in whole or in part commencing 5 years after the issue date, with a strike price of €1. Based on a reference price of €17.34 for the PSA share5 , the warrants correspond to 39.7 MM shares of PSA, or 4.2% of its fully diluted share capital6. GM will not have governance or voting rights with respect to PSA and has agreed to sell the PSA shares received upon exercise of the warrants within 35 days after exercise. The transaction includes all of Opel/Vauxhall’s automotive operations, comprising Opel and Vauxhall brands, six assembly and five component-manufacturing facilities, one engineering center (Rüsselsheim) and approximately 40,000 employees. GM will retain the engineering center in Torino, Italy. Opel/Vauxhall will also continue to benefit from intellectual property licenses from GM until its vehicles progressively convert to PSA platforms over the coming years. In connection with the transaction, GM will take a primarily non-cash special charge of $4.0-4.5 Bn. Ongoing Pension Fund Commitments All of Opel/Vauxhall’s European and U.K. pension plans, funded and unfunded, with the exception of the German Actives Plan and selected smaller plans will remain with GM. The obligations with respect to the German Actives Plan and these smaller plans of Opel/Vauxhall will be transferred to PSA. GM will pay PSA €3.0 Bn for full settlement of transferred pension obligations. Closing Conditions The transaction is subject to various closing conditions, including regulatory approvals and reorganizations, and is expected to close before the end of 2017. Warrants The issuance of the warrants is subject to the vote of shareholders at PSA’s General Meeting of May 10th, 2017. The three main shareholders of PSA (the French State, the Peugeot family and DongFeng) representing in aggregate 36.6% of the share capital and 51.5%7 of the voting rights of PSA have undertaken to vote in favor of the resolution related to the issuance of the warrants to GM. In the event the warrant issuance reserved to GM and its affiliates is not approved by PSA’s General Meeting, PSA will settle the €0.65 Bn in cash over five years.
  24. It is now official. This morning, PSA Group has agreed to buy Opel and Vauxhall from General Motors for 2.2 billion euros (about $2.3 billion). The deal is comprised of a 1.8 billion euros ($1.9 billion) payment for Opel and Vauxhall, along with a stake in Opel's financing arm. This makes PSA Group the second-largest automaker in Europe. “It gives us the opportunity to become a real European champion. Our plan is to build a common future for Opel and Vauxhall and fix the existing issues,” said PSA Chief Executive Officer Carlos Tavares. Those existing issues include Opel and Vauxhall never breaking even for GM. Over the past two decades, Opel and Vauxhall have lost almost $20 billion. In 2016, the division was projected to break even, but the complications of Great Britain leaving the EU meant they posted a loss of $257 million. "The way I look at this is positioning Opel-Vauxhall to be incredibly successful in the future," said GM CEO Mary Barra when asked by a reporter if she was relieved about the sale of Opel and Vauxhall. "General Motors doesn't have to be relieved. They can be proud of giving Opel-Vauxhall a better future," said Tavares. PSA Group is aiming to make Opel and Vauxhall profitable once again, with operating profit targets of 2 percent in 2020 and 6 percent by 2026. These targets will be reached by joint cost savings of 1.7 billion euros (about $1.8 billion) by spreading the costs of developing new vehicles and sharing purchasing costs. General Motors won't be fully cutting its ties with Opel and Vauxhall for the time being. GM has allowed PSA Group to license technology rights to keep selling current models (including the upcoming Insignia) until they transition onto PSA platforms. According to Reuters, the next-generation Opel/Vauxhall Corsa will be the first PSA developed model. GM will also collaborate with PSA on various projects such as hydrogen fuel cells. Finally, GM will pay PSA 3 billion euros ($3.18 billion) to settle transferred pension obligations. But there are still a number of unanswered questions with this deal. The big one deals with job cuts and plant closures. With this deal, PSA group will add roughly 38,000 workers and 10 production facilities. Some analysts believe that PSA Group will close two to three plants within the next five years, with the possibility of those closures taking place in Great Britain due to Brexit. Taveres has said that the automaker would honor existing labor agreements and closing plants is a “simplistic” solution. “We don’t need to shut down plants,” said Tavares. Second is what will happen for Buick and Holden when models they share with Opel transition to PSA platforms. Both Buick and Holden will be getting the next-generation Insignia as the Regal and Commodore. Buick also gets the Opel Mokka to sell as the Encore, while Holden sells the Astra compact. Finally, there is the question about PSA Group's plans to re-enter the U.S. How does the purchase of Opel and Vauxhall affect their plans? Source: Bloomberg, Reuters, Automotive News (Subscription Required), General Motors, PSA Group Press Release is on Page 2 Opel/Vauxhall to join PSA Group Establishes PSA Group as #2 in Europe. This strong and balanced presence in its home markets will serve as the basis of profitable growth worldwide Joint venture in auto financing with BNP Paribas to support development of Opel/Vauxhall brands €2.2 Bn transaction advances GM’s transformation and unlocks shareholder value through disciplined capital allocation Detroit and Paris – General Motors Co. (NYSE:GM) and PSA Group (Paris:UG) today announced an agreement under which GM’s Opel/Vauxhall subsidiary and GM Financial’s European operations will join the PSA Group in a transaction valuing these activities at €1.3 Bn and €0.9 Bn, respectively. With the addition of Opel/Vauxhall, which generated revenue of €17.7 Bn in 20161, PSA will become the second-largest automotive company in Europe, with a 17% market share2. Creates sound European foundation for PSA to support its worldwide profitable growth “We are proud to join forces with Opel/Vauxhall and are deeply committed to continuing to develop this great company and accelerating its turnaround,” said Carlos Tavares, chairman of the Managing Board of PSA. “We respect all that Opel/Vauxhall’s talented people have achieved as well as the company’s fine brands and strong heritage. We intend to manage PSA and Opel/Vauxhall capitalizing on their respective brand identities. Having already created together winning products for the European market, we know that Opel/Vauxhall is the right partner. We see this as a natural extension of our relationship and are eager to take it to the next level.” “We are confident that the Opel/Vauxhall turnaround will significantly accelerate with our support, while respecting the commitments made by GM to the Opel/Vauxhall employees,” continued Mr. Tavares. Advances GM’s Transformation and Unlocks Value “We are very pleased that together, GM, our valued colleagues at Opel/Vauxhall and PSA have created a new opportunity to enhance the long-term performance of our respective companies by building on the success of our prior alliance”, said Mary T. Barra, GM chairman and chief executive officer. “For GM, this represents another major step in the ongoing work that is driving our improved performance and accelerating our momentum. We are reshaping our company and delivering consistent, record results for our owners through disciplined capital allocation to our higher-return investments in our core automotive business and in new technologies that are enabling us to lead the future of personal mobility. “We believe this new chapter puts Opel and Vauxhall in an even stronger position for the long term and we look forward to our participation in the future success and strong value-creation potential of PSA through our economic interest and continued collaboration on current and exciting new projects,” Ms. Barra concluded. Strengthens Each Company for the Long Term The transaction will allow substantial economies of scale and synergies in purchasing, manufacturing and R&D. Annual synergies of €1.7 Bn are expected by 2026 – of which a significant part is expected to be delivered by 2020, accelerating Opel/Vauxhall’s turnaround. Leveraging the successful partnership with GM, PSA expects Opel/Vauxhall to reach a recurring operating margin3 of 2% by 2020 and 6% by 2026, and to generate a positive operational free cash flow4 by 2020. PSA, together with BNP Paribas, will also acquire all of GM Financial’s European operations through a newly formed 50%/50% joint venture that will retain GM Financial’s current European platform and team. This joint venture will be fully consolidated by BNP Paribas and accounted under the equity method by PSA. The transaction is another step in GM’s ongoing work to transform the company, which has delivered three years of record performance and a strong 2017 outlook, and returned significant capital to shareholders. It will strengthen GM’s core business, support its continued deployment of resources to higher-return opportunities including in advanced technologies driving the future, and unlock significant value for shareholders. By immediately improving EBIT-adjusted, EBIT-adjusted margins and adjusted automotive free cash flow and de-risking the balance sheet, the transaction will enable GM to lower the cash balance requirement under its capital allocation framework by $2 Bn, which it intends to use to accelerate share repurchases, subject to market conditions. GM will also participate in the future success of the combined entity through its ownership of warrants to purchase shares of PSA. GM and PSA also expect to collaborate in the further deployment of electrification technologies and existing supply agreements for Holden and certain Buick models will continue, and PSA may potentially source long-term supply of fuel cell systems from the GM/Honda joint venture. Additional Information Terms of the Agreement Opel/Vauxhall automotive operations will be acquired by PSA for €1.3 Bn. GM Financial’s European operations will be jointly acquired by PSA and BNP Paribas for 0.8 times their pro forma book value at the closing of the transaction, or approximately €0.9 Bn. The transaction has a total value of €2.2 Bn, for Opel/Vauxhall automotive operations and 100% of GM Financial’s European operations. The transaction value for PSA, including Opel/Vauxhall and 50% of GM Financial’s European operations, will be €1.8 Bn. In connection with this transaction, GM or its affiliates will subscribe warrants for €0.65 Bn. These warrants have a nine-year maturity and are exercisable at any time in whole or in part commencing 5 years after the issue date, with a strike price of €1. Based on a reference price of €17.34 for the PSA share5 , the warrants correspond to 39.7 MM shares of PSA, or 4.2% of its fully diluted share capital6. GM will not have governance or voting rights with respect to PSA and has agreed to sell the PSA shares received upon exercise of the warrants within 35 days after exercise. The transaction includes all of Opel/Vauxhall’s automotive operations, comprising Opel and Vauxhall brands, six assembly and five component-manufacturing facilities, one engineering center (Rüsselsheim) and approximately 40,000 employees. GM will retain the engineering center in Torino, Italy. Opel/Vauxhall will also continue to benefit from intellectual property licenses from GM until its vehicles progressively convert to PSA platforms over the coming years. In connection with the transaction, GM will take a primarily non-cash special charge of $4.0-4.5 Bn. Ongoing Pension Fund Commitments All of Opel/Vauxhall’s European and U.K. pension plans, funded and unfunded, with the exception of the German Actives Plan and selected smaller plans will remain with GM. The obligations with respect to the German Actives Plan and these smaller plans of Opel/Vauxhall will be transferred to PSA. GM will pay PSA €3.0 Bn for full settlement of transferred pension obligations. Closing Conditions The transaction is subject to various closing conditions, including regulatory approvals and reorganizations, and is expected to close before the end of 2017. Warrants The issuance of the warrants is subject to the vote of shareholders at PSA’s General Meeting of May 10th, 2017. The three main shareholders of PSA (the French State, the Peugeot family and DongFeng) representing in aggregate 36.6% of the share capital and 51.5%7 of the voting rights of PSA have undertaken to vote in favor of the resolution related to the issuance of the warrants to GM. In the event the warrant issuance reserved to GM and its affiliates is not approved by PSA’s General Meeting, PSA will settle the €0.65 Bn in cash over five years. View full article
  25. Only a few weeks after first learning about the talks between General Motors and PSA Group on the possible purchase of Opel/Vauxhall, Reuters reports that a deal has been reached. This afternoon, two sources told the news service the board of PSA Group approved the deal. An announcement about the purchase is expected on Monday. Also, Opel cut short a town hall meeting today at their headquarters in Ruesselsheim, Germany due to management being unable to discuss details about the potential acquisition. A town hall meeting possibly discussing this will take place on Monday morning. Details about the deal are being kept under wraps, but earlier in the week, sources revealed that the two parties had narrowed the differences on the almost $10 billion in Opel pension liabilities and other issues. Source: Reuters View full article

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