Ford announced today that it has entered into an agreement to sell a major portion of its stake in Mazda but will continue its relationship with the Japanese automaker. Ford will reduce its shares from 33.4 percent to just over 13 percent.
Ford said that the action comes as a plan to keep its balance sheets strong – in other words, keep Ford up and running instead of filing for bankruptcy. The sale of the Mazda shares will net Ford approximately $540 million.
Ford and Mazda will continue their joint ventures and will continue sharing platforms and powertrains. Even with its 13 percent share, Ford will remain Mazda’s largest shareholder and will maintain a seat on Mazda’s Board.