Car Magazine: Audi to Buy Ducati
Report says debt-laden motorcycle manufacturer could be had for little cash; VW head Piech wants 2-wheelers.
Ducati produces around 40,000 bikes per year, and its debt burden is said to outpace revenues. It's been reported that Volkswagen Group head Ferdinand Piech has been pining after a reputable 2-wheel badge in his stable; the acquisition of Ducati would be especially sweet, as rival Mercedes-Benz's AMG division has a cross-brand promotional partnership with the motorcycle manufacturer.
According to Car, there are other suitors for the brand, but they can't come to the table unless Audi declines: "India's Mahindra and Hero, Daimler and Volkswagen are said to be among the leading suitors, but Car can reveal that Audi has struck an exclusivity deal giving it first dibs on Ducati," the site reports.
Also according to Car, Audi has until mid-April to finalize the deal -- and in terms of cash output, it's a fairly small one. In exchange for absorbing nearly $1 billion in liabilities, Audi could pick up Ducati for a mere $100 million to $200 million.
Sounds like a fire sale to me!
How in the world has Ducati allowed itself to become so burdened with debt while overpricing it’s product? Seems like there is an easy fix for this one.
Make the world’s most sought after motorcycle brand affordable, and the masses will respond in kind! Crank up production of the most popular models and sell them competitively within the market! "Voila" success!!
"Crank up production and make it affordable" do you have any idea of how much it cost to do business in Italy?
Have you heard of their article 18? It makes it virtually impossible to fire an employeee unless they steal and get caught red handed.
So dead weight hangs around for very long time periods before they are gone. There are constant strikes you do not hear about here in the US because we are world news dead. Just this year (2012) there has been a trucker strike(2 weeks),taxi strike, metal/mechanic strike,ATTORNEY STRIKE!!!
The unions are opressive and will not ceed anything. That is why Audi (VW group) is picking them up so "cheaply"....Ducati has
huge problems with promisses, perks and pensions for their employees former and current. Europe is in a bigger ressesion than the US and sales are way down for performance bikes. Italian banks are super tight with money ( they just got some money ala TARP) that they are not sharing...just like what happened here. They got it from the European union. The Italians will not even follow what the unions agreed to do years ago to help Germany be competitive. Audi could revive the NSU brand which used make cool cars (NSU TTS) and a host of all manner of motorcycles.
But Ducati now has an excellent brand image and since they own another italian company Lamborghini it seems natural for them to do this.
at least ducati won't be owned by the chinese. poor benelli. benelli does get a much needed injection of cash from the chinese now.
the monster is sort of affordable but, who wants a street fighter? sleek fully cloaked affordable sport bikes with exceptional handling is the name of the game here!
a dealer comes and goes every so many years, no support. and absolutely nil promotion that many people never even heard of ducati. like moto guzzi and benelli, the italian make some pretty good bikes!
Producing more of a product that cost too much to build does not solve the problem. Additionally, a part of what makes Ducati desirable is exclusivity which would be lost in m****duction. Examples are: Ferrari-=exclusive=pricy
Arguably the Corvette is every bit as " good' at what it does as a sports car, but is less desirable because it lacks exclusivity.
You got a point there Raffa, I'm also sure Rossi didn't come cheap when he left Yamaha for Ducati. I would buy a Ducati if the price was reasonable.
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