After months of speculation, Ford announced today that Chinese automaker Geely is, in fact, the preferred bidder for the Volvo brand.
“Ford’s objective in our discussions with Geely is to secure an agreement that is in the best interests of all the parties,” said Lewis Booth, Ford executive vice president and CFO. “Any prospective sale would have to ensure that Volvo has the resources, including the capital investment, necessary to further strengthen the business and build its global franchise, while enabling Ford to continue to focus on and implement our core ‘one Ford’ strategy.”
Much like the GM-Opel drama, Ford’s announcement indicates a preferred bidder, but the transaction is anything but over. Ford officials maintain no final decision on the matter has been made, but if the transaction occurs, Ford will transfer complete ownership of Volvo to Geely. Ford won’t maintain any stake in the Swedish automaker, but will reportedly continue to collaborate with Volvo on technological development.
“Ford believes Geely has the potential to be a responsible future owner of Volvo and to take the business forward while preserving its core values and the independence of the Swedish brand. But there is much work that needs to be completed in the more substantive discussions that are agreed to take place. We have no specific timeline to conclude the discussions.”