Volvo Unions Call For Geely Investigation

Thor Johnsen
by Thor Johnsen
volvo unions call for geely investigation

Corresponding with news that Ford and Geely are close to closing the Volvo deal, Volvo’s unions have expressed skepticism towards Geely, even going so far as to ask that the company be investigated. An ownership company based in tax havens, a history of trademark theft, and minimal transparancy have all worried unions within Volvo. Swedish Engineers at Volvo and the Metalworkers have expressed worries over the lack of information regarding Volvo’s future within Geely. “There’s a great information vacuum” says Magnus Sundemo of the Engineers. “We know very little about what the consequences will be if or when Geely takes over Volvo – We need to have more information, and we need reasonable time to examine the information” he continues.


There are several questions around Geely according to the union, one being the company structure. The company Ford has chosen as the preferred bidder, and possibly buyers of Volvo, is Zhejiang Geely Holding Group – a privately held Chinese Company, which in turn owns Proper Glory Holding (what a name!) registered in Virgin Islands (they must have some humor at Geely…). Proper Glory owns 51% of Geely Automotive Holdings Ltd, the car manufacturers. Geely Automotive is listed at the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, and has its HQ in the Cayman Islands. A further eight subsidiaries are registered in Cayman Islands, and seven more in The Virgin Islands.


“This in not something that enhances the image of a ‘nice’ company, and the question is where Volvo is positioned in this structure. An unlisted company in Cayman Islands needs no tranparancy, and no accountability. That worries” says Magnus Sundemo, who also complains about the lack of good information around the financing of the deal.

In a meeting between Volvos unions and Geely management last week, the unions demanded there’d be hired a special employee-consultant to examine the deal. He should be granted 200,000 euros and 5-6 weeks to be able to examine the deal properly. Volvo management granted 50.000 euros and 2-3 weeks.

Volvo’s Olle Axelson comments: “Volvo and Ford have already answered all questions asked. These are just repeated questions.” John Fleming, CO at Volvo says he understands Volvo employees’ concerns, but assures them that Ford has been a good parent to Volvo, and is certain that Geely will be too. “Otherwise, we wouldn’t have chosen them. – But nothing has been decided yet.”

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  • Philadlj Philadlj on Dec 11, 2009

    A Chinese automaker, up to no good? Naaaw...

  • Geo. Levecque Geo. Levecque on Dec 12, 2009

    These workers have every right to be worried for there future, which after all the Machinery an everything else is transferred to China, it won't be the same Volvo for sure! I would suggest that the Workers get together and try buying out China, hardly likely I know but while they still have "jobs", I can see a lot of unemployed Swedish workers in the future, not a nice scene and what can Volvo owners expect here in North America?

  • Jeff S Some of us don't care either way we are not into this type of car. Most of these will be stored in garages waiting for their value to go up. As someone above noted this is an old body style which is retro 70s Challenger which after researching it came out in the 2008 MY which means a long run for a model that is in its 16th year. I have always liked these but if I bought one I would not spend this kind of money on one probably get the V-6 version and use it as a family car but then I am not into drag racing or muscle cars. For the type of car it is it has a decent rear seat and not too bad of a trunk. Most of us are not going to spend 100k for any vehicle at least currently so its not something most of us will buy and stick in a garage waiting for its value to increase. I am glad that these editions came out for those who can afford them and it keeps a little more color into what has become a very dull vehicle market but then with age I pick the dull appliance like reliable vehicle because that's what I need. Impressive car but not for me.
  • Jonathan The Germans. So organized they can appear disorganized. I agree with some others, classic names like Thunderbird, Imperial, Grand Prix, Ambassador etc. just have more appeal.
  • Bobbysirhan A friend had one when they first came out. He was CFO of some green California company and could charge the Volt at work. At home, the PHEV gave him an excuse to make his wife park her nicer car outdoors while the Volt get their condo's one-car garage. He liked the Volt, and he spent very little on energy during the 'first one's free!' era of EV ownership. Of course, the green company went bust soon after, and he wound up with a job that involved far more driving and ultimately the need for a more substantial car. I drove the Volt once after his wife had made a return trip to Los Angeles, depleting the battery. I don't know what a first gen Volt drives like with a charged battery, but it was really gutless with two adults, a yellow lab, and a dead battery. My other memory of it was that it had a really cramped back seat for a car that was about as large as a Civic. My friend who bought it liked it though, and that's not always been the case for GM vehicles.
  • MrIcky I think the Shakedown is more my speed of the last call editions- but this is impressive.
  • Dukeisduke I tried watching the live reveal last night, but after 15 minutes of jawing by MT+ personalities (and yes, I like Chris Jacobs and Alex Taylor), I turned it off.
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