Old timers at Dealbreaker will remember with fondness the days when Volkswagen briefly became the largest company by market-cap in the world, and when it became clear to a much wider audience that Porsche made more money from their barbarian-like, hedge fund behavior* than that whole selling cars thing.
You might also remember that Porsche has been lusting, in the German sense, after Volkswagen, for a long time.
Porsche Automobil Holding SE and Volkswagen AG, two of the storied names in Germany's car-making history, said Wednesday they plan to merge their operations, creating an integrated auto giant with 10 independent brands, including Porsche's coveted sports-car operations.
Following a meeting of Porsche's owner families - Porsche and Piech - the company said in a statement that a task force is set to establish within the next four weeks the basis for a merged company.
Porsche said the families Wednesday discussed proposals laid out by Porsche's and Volkswagen's executive boards, which include capital measures, and agreed that an integrated car-manufacturing group should be forged.
A person familiar with the situation said the current plan includes a possible capital increase by around EUR5 billion to reduce Porsche's debts, which fueled speculation about its financial situation in recent weeks.
"In the final structure, 10 brands shall stand below an integrative leading company alongside each other, whereby the independence of all brands and explicitly also of Porsche shall be ensured," the Stuttgart-based auto maker said.
Porsche wants, Porsche gets. No? Well, not exactly. The line that seems to be coming out is that famous "mergers of equals" play. You know, like Daimler-Chrysler? But, now even Lower Saxony (which holds a veto right) looks ready to stand aside. The times they are a changing. We'll see who is left standing.
* "To crush your financial enemies. See der capital driven before you. Hear the lamentations of dee regulatory relations women."
Porsche, Volkswagen Seek To Merge Operations [The Wall Street Journal]