Former Porsche Managers To Be Charged For Stock Manipulation
After three years of work, police in Germany concluded its probe into the affair surrounding the failed takeover of Volkswagen by Porsche. Former Porsche CEO Wendelin Wiedeking and his then CFO Holger Haerter have been investigated for market manipulation. According to Der Spiegel, the public prosecutor in Stuttgart, Germany, will charge the duo. Reuters heard meanwhile that the trigger is not yet being pulled, and that the two have three suspense-filled months ahead of them.
“A spokesman for prosecutors in Stuttgart, where Porsche is based, said on Monday a police-led probe into the affair has now been concluded, confirming a report by German magazine Der Spiegel.
Lawyers of the two former executives have until the end of October to respond to the findings of the probe – which looked into possible manipulation of VW’s share price by Wiedeking and Holger Haerter during the sportscar maker’s botched 2008-09 takeover of VW – the spokesman said.”
In 2008, Porsche denied that it wants to take over Volkswagen. Seven months later, Porsche had options for almost three quarters of VW. This triggered a historic short squeeze and propelled the Volkswagen stock to over 1,000 euros. The takeover bid nearly bankrupted Porsche. Volkswagen bought all Porsche on August 1.
The saying goes that Cayenne sales enabled the production of real sports cars like the 911, but management was focused on derivatives market plays and empire building, not so much sports cars.
I understand Wiedeking saved Porsche after the 964 fiasco in the early 90s. I guess hubris got to him.
If you refer to the previous charts that Bertel put up showing the tangled corporate structure between the two, it's no surprise that the people involved were also pulling shenanigans. Unfortunately, this is modern business, everything is gambled with. If you are a company and need a stockpile of steel, but don't need it for a while, chances are you might be playing around with steels futures until that time trying to grab more money 'out of thin air'. Airlines do if with jet fuel options. Nearly every multinational tries in somewhat to shift around production to take advantage of currency fluctuations. The modern corporation in many ways, a manufacturing entity that dabbles in bankery.
I still like the Wiedeking approach to wag the dog. Nice attempt. Real sportsmanship. Let's wait and see. (BTW: Who suffered?)