Volvo, Polestar, Lotus, Lynk & Co, Zeekr, Geometry, London Electric Vehicle Company, Proton, Radar Auto, Farizon Auto, Ouling Auto – these are some (but not all) brands owned by Geely. The automotive giant owns half of Smart through its 50:50 joint venture with Mercedes at which it's one of the biggest shareholders. Last September, it bought a 7.6 percent stake in Aston Martin Lagonda. Now, it's more than doubling its share to reach around 17 percent.

To boost its share, Geely has spent £234 million (about $292M at current exchange rates) and is now the third-largest shareholder, behind Lawrence Stroll and Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund. It's ahead of Mercedes-Benz, but the three-pointed star said in October 2020 it would increase its share in Aston Martin Lagonda to as much as 20 percent by the end of 2023.

Aston Martin DBS 770 Ultimate

Per the new agreement, Geely will not be allowed to increase its share until August 2024. In the meantime, it'll be given a seat on the board by appointing a non-executive director to the Aston Martin Board of Directors as a shareholder representative. In addition, it'll also appoint a second person as an observer. Speaking with Financial Times last week, Geely chief executive Daniel Li said he "loves the brand" and wants to create synergies.

In the press release issued today, Lawrence Stroll declared: "Geely can offer us a deep understanding of the key strategic growth market of China as well as the opportunity to access their range of technologies."

In the past, Geely has made attempts to acquire Aston Martin Lagonda, including in 2020 when Stroll had the winning bid. The Gaydon-based marque is on the verge of starting its portfolio refresh by unveiling the DB11 replacement next week. A total of eight models will be introduced by 2026, including a mysterious car that will be positioned above its traditional grand tourers.

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