Aston Martin won’t be sold to the Indians, nor will it be sold to the Chinese. The low-intensity bidding war for the British boutique sports car maker was won by the Italian private equity group Investindustrial. It is buying 37.5 percent for $241 million via a capital increase agreed with majority Kuwaiti owner Investment Dar, Reuters reports after having received confirmation by Aston Martin.
Investindustrial beat tractor maker Mahindra and Mahindra in a two-way battle. Dark horses like Geely, Toyota, or BMW, offered by the media as contenders, did not take part in the bidding.
The cash helps Aston Martin to invest $1 billion in new products and technology, and says, Reuters, to “compete with Volkswagen’s Bentley and rival UK luxury car manufacturer Jaguar Land Rover.” However, in the car business, a billion dollar does not go far. The money is supposed to last through 2018.
Bernstein analyst Max Warburton told Reuters that is looks like a temporary fix because Aston Martin’s owners were unable to attract another car manufacturer to invest at the price they wanted.
“It doesn’t look like a long-term solution,” Warburton said. “This deal doesn’t sort scale, access to technology, emissions or entry to new segments.”
Aston Martin sold 2,340 cars in the nine months to Sept. 30, 19 percent down on 2011.
No agreement has been made on a technical partnership for Aston Martin with Daimler AG’s Mercedes.