General Motors Company’s board declined to name Canada’s Magna International as the winning bidder for Opel this past Friday. Sources familiar with the matter said that the board had decided to ask for more information from the German government on state financing available to complete a deal.
“The GM board of directors met today to discuss options for Opel. No decision was taken,” GM spokeswoman Karin Kirchner said late Friday.
One of the sources said that GM directors asked Berlin what financing would be available to back a rival bid for Opel by Brussels-based financial investor RHJ International. Interestingly enough, it was reported last month that many GM executives are upset about losing Opel and are hoping for a deal with RHJ in hopes that GM could one day repurchase control over the German brand.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that a decision was “urgently” needed for the Opel’s future. Klaus Franz, Opel’s labor leader, called on GM to pick a buyer for Opel this week, and threatened “spectacular measures” if the company did not make a decision.
“We have been calm so far, listened diligently and made comments, but that is over now. If nothing changes from General Motors’ side by the end of this week, then we will be active, and there will definitely be spectacular measures from us,” he said in a statement.
– By: Stephen Calogera