The world’s second-largest car group, Volkswagen, gave the go-ahead on Monday evening (September 5) to list its subsidiary Porsche on the stock exchange in one of the biggest IPOs ever in Europe, despite the fact that the markets are on the slide. Volkswagen’s board of directors “decided today with the approval of the supervisory board” to list the shares of its subsidiary Porsche AG “subject to further developments in the capital market” with a view to “implementation before the end of the year”. according to a press release from the two agencies that met during the day.
The start of the stock market listing will be given “at the end of September or the beginning of October” with the intention to “float” (“intention to float”) part of Porsche’s capital, a prelude to the public placement of the shares . The German manufacturer unveiled its project last winter, exactly on February 24, the first day of the Russian army’s invasion of Ukraine. The economic shocks that followed, especially in the stock markets, had cast doubt on the timing of this “IPO”, the introduction of Porsche on the stock market.
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But the manufacturer of the mythical 911 has always aroused the greed of investors, who value the Zuffenhausen company, near Stuttgart (southwest), between 60 and 85 billion euros, according to Bloomberg. International investors, including the American T Rowe Price Group, and the sovereign investment fund of the emirate of Qatar, have already expressed their interest in subscribing to the operation, along with billionaires such as the founder of the producer of energy drinks. Red Bull, Dietrich Mateschitz, as well as the president of LVMH, Bernard Arnault, according to the agency.
Porsche is currently fully owned by the Volkswagen Group. This is in turn controlled by a financial holding company, called Porsche SE, through which the Porsche-Piech family has an absolute majority of the voting rights (about 54%). The German region of Lower Saxony is also a direct shareholder. up to 20%, and thus be able to exercise its influence there. This construction prevents the former Porsche-Piech family, majority shareholder in the Porsche holding company, from exerting a significant influence on the Volkswagen Group and therefore on the gold nugget Porsche.
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Porsche’s capital was divided into 50% preference shares, which provided an enhanced but non-voting dividend, and 50% ordinary shares with voting rights. Institutional investors will be able to subscribe for “up to 25%” of the preferred shares at a yet to be determined price. They will also be offered to the public in Germany, Austria, France, Italy, Spain and Switzerland, Porsche said in a separate press release. At the same time, the VW authorities approved the sale of “25% plus one share” of the “ordinary” shares of Porsche AG to the Porsche SE holding company. The Porsche-Piech clan will thus have a blocking minority in the family business, which the engineer Ferry Porsche launched after the Second World War.
Porsche’s “IPO” should also boost the stock market valuation of the parent company, which remains at around 85 billion euros, especially against major competitor Tesla, which is worth around ten times more. By giving up a fraction of its control over Porsche, Volkswagen will gain the billions needed to finance its investments in the electric, connected and autonomous car. It is above all “a historic moment for Porsche”, declared the new head of Volkswagen since September 1, Oliver Blume, until then chairman of the Porsche board and who remains so for the moment.
Partially listed, Porsche will have “greater independence” by being one of the “most successful sports car manufacturers in the world”, he added. Sir. Blume presented ambitious targets for Porsche in July, with operating profitability for sales exceeding 20% over the long term. The manufacturer of the electric Taycan plans to launch a new all-electric SUV model. To meet global demand for electrified luxury cars, 80% of the speedster maker’s vehicles will be fully electric by 2030, Blume promised.
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