Skoda is celebrating its 25th anniversary of being part of the Volkswagen Group.
The original contract was signed back in 1991 and saw Volkswagen acquire a 31 percent stake in Skoda for 620 million Deutschmarks. Volkswagen's bet paid off substantially as Skoda had a two car lineup at the time and was only producing about 200,000 units annually. Fast forward to today and Skoda is producing over a million vehicles annually and has a presence in more than 100 markets worldwide.
The success didn't happen overnight as Volkswagen has invested approximately $12.2 (€11) billion into Skoda since 1991. Volkswagen also gradually increased its stake in the automaker until it became the sole owner of the company in 2000.
Skoda's success has been a huge boon for the Czech Republic as the automaker generated 4.5 percent of the country's gross domestic product in 2014. At the same time, Skoda was responsible for nearly 8 percent of all Czech exports. These are some pretty impressive numbers and that's before considering the thousands of jobs that have been created as part of the acquisition.
In a statement, Skoda CEO Bernhard Maier said “In the last 25 years, Skoda has developed from a regional brand into an internationally successful car manufacturer. The decisive factors in that were the acquisition through Volkswagen Group a quarter of a century ago and the professional cooperation between Skoda and Volkswagen."