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Fiat To Sell Ferrari?

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On: Thu, Nov 18, 2010 at 10:40AM | By: Chris Weiss

Fiat To Sell Ferrari?

Fiat is currently considering selling off Ferrari, according to an Automotive News report. As the report goes, Fiat chief Sergio Marchionne indicated such a move in an analysts meeting in Turin, Italy last week. Fiat would sell Ferrari and then use the money to purchase a further stake in Chrysler. One possible candidate for purchase will have quite the stake in the supercar market should it complete the Ferrari buy. Game of Monopoly, anyone?

Earlier this month, before news of Fiat's desire to sell Ferrari broke, reports out of Germany indicated that Volkswagen chairman Ferdinand Piëch had expressed interest in buying Ferrari, in addition to Alfa Romeo. Both VW CEO Martin Winterkorn and Sergio Marchionne subsequently indicated that such a sale was but a pipe dream and that neither Alfa or Ferrari was for sale. But this new report puts a little question back into a possible Ferrari to VW sale. Alfa, though, is still reportedly off the table.

If such a sale were ever to materialize, Volkswagen would further cement its role as the go-to for the world's most iconic supercars. The VW Group already has Bugatti, Lamborghini and Porsche, so Ferrari would just help round that prestigious pack out.

According to sources from the analyst meeting, Fiat may put Ferrari up for an initial public offering (IPO). The company has a 90 percent stake in Ferrari, which could be valued at 2.4 billion euros ($3.3 billion). Fiat may also look to sell off auto supplier Magnetti Marelli before moving forward with purchasing a larger stake in Chrysler. Fiat will reportedly aim to increase its stake in Chrysler from 20 percent to 25 percent by the first quarter of next year and to 35 percent by the end of 2011. Automotive News' report cites a 2013 to 2016 time frame for Fiat to gain a 50 percent stake.

According to an Autoweek report from last week, VW has plenty of money on hand ($27 billion) to purchase Ferrari. That report indicated that Fiat may sell part of Ferrari while seeking to maintain a majority stake.

Fiat did not confirm any of the speculation about a Ferrari sale for Automotive News' report, outside of confirming the analyst meeting that took place on Nov. 12.

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