No official bid from Lawrence Strol, too.
Last week, a report from Autocar indicated that Canadian billionaire Lawrence Strol could be interested in making a major investment in Aston Martin. The British manufacturer is struggling financially, posting losses of £80 million in the first half of 2019, which equals about $105 million at the current exchange rates. It turns out the information may not be correct as Aston’s chief executive Andy Palmer has confirmed nothing is official yet.
“You know what we would have to do if there was an official approach. Beyond that, I can’t comment,” Palmer told Reuters during the company’s new factory opening in Wales. “We’re certainly not actively soliciting any other participation. That’s not to say it doesn’t come.”
Currently, the 106-year-old company based in Gaydon is owned by a number of different parties, including the Kuwait-based Adeem/Primewagon shareholding group that owns a 36-percent stake, Morgan shareholder InvestIndustrial owns 31 percent, while Mercedes owner Daimler owns a 4-percent share. The manufacturer aims to double its global sales by 2022 to 14,000 units annually but needs a new financial injection to help the process.
While many companies in the industry believe consolidation is the way to survive these days, Palmer thinks Aston Martin doesn’t need to belong to a bigger automotive group, giving Ferrari as an example for a successful business case. Meanwhile, Daimler’s small stake in the marque gives the Brits access to modern technologies without the need for major investments.
“There is a perfectly rational route to success in our current state,” Palmer concluded.