I know that stories about who will buy a down and out Korean carmaker called Ssangyong are not a major click-through magnet. Therefore, just for the record: Ssangyong selected India’s Mahindra & Mahindra as the preferred bidder to acquire a majority stake. And just in case, they named India’s Raghav Industries as the secondary preferred bidder, says The Nikkei [sub].
Ssangyong wants to sign an M.O.U. with Mahindra by the end of August, but only after they fork over 5 percent of the (undisclosed) offered acquisition price as earnest money.
Mahindra wants to go through Ssangyong’s books first before they decide on a final price. A contract could be signed in November.
If the deal falls through, there is always the second preferred bidder. Raghav Industries is an investment affiliate of Indian conglomerate Ruia Group. Not in the car business per se, they dabble in tires, automotive-sealing products, heavy engineering, sugar and electronics.
Indian companies are quite aggressive when it comes to buying distressed automotive assets, something that still is a bit alien to the Chinese competition. But who knows, maybe Geely/Volvo will change that.