Business

Restructuring leads to shift in auto sector ownership

The automotive sector is headed for major ownership changes as companies grapple with the fallout from falling sales.
A U.S. court has approved the sale of Chrysler's assets to Italian automaker Fiat. ((Canadian Prses))

The auto industry is in a state of profound upheaval, as sales have fallen, factories have shut down and jobs have been cut.

The struggle to survive the financial crisis reached a peak on June 1 when General Motors Corp. filed for creditor protection. The company hopes to remake itself by shedding some divisions and reworking its balance sheet. GM wants to be out of protection within 60 to 90 days.

Chrysler LLC filed for creditor protection in April, and on May 31 a U.S. judge approved the sale of the company's assets to Italian automaker Fiat.

Given the changes going on, the state of who owns whom in the auto sector is in flux. Here's a look at proposed new ownership stakes in the industry:

General Motors: U.S. Treasury: 60 per cent; Canadian government: 12.5 per cent; UAW retiree health-care trust: 17.5 per cent; current debtholders: 10 per cent.

Opel: (including Britain's Vauxhall) Magna International Inc.: 20 per cent; Sberbank: 35 per cent; GM: 35 per cent; Opel employees: 10 per cent.

Saturn: After saying it had 16 potential buyers interested in the brand, GM struck a tentative deal with Penske Automotive Group to sell all 350 Saturn dealerships.

Saab: GM struck a deal to sell Saab to a consortium led by Sweden's Koenigsegg Automotive AB, a tiny luxury carmaker that produces only a dozen custom-made models a year

Hummer: GM said it has a tentative deal with Sichuan Tengzhong Heavy Industrial Machinery Co. of China.

Chrysler: UAW retiree health-care trust: 55 per cent; Fiat: 20 per cent initially, could increase to 35 per cent; U.S. and Canadian governments: 10 per cent

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