BMW and Daimler to swap shares and boost cooperation

We’ve been hearing about a Daimler and BMW “cooperation” for some time now. Both automakers have been stepping up previous efforts to share cost due to the current economic downturn. A German magazine, Der Spiegel, is now reporting that the two automakers plan on swapping shares to boost cooperation.

The magazine said that the Daimler and BMW will exchange a seven percent stake in each other. It said reported that the German government has been approached to find out whether it would overrule such a cross-ownership, reports Automotive News.

Der Spiegel said that the two automakers will announce full details shortly and that the move is expected to save the two automakers “several hundred million of euros” in the short term and billions in the mid-term.

There is some fear from the Quandt family which owns 46 percent of BMW. Der Spiegel said that family head Johanna Quandt and her son Stefan fear that Daimler will take over BMW as it did with Chrysler after a much talked about “merger of equals” in 1998.