PSA Group (Peugeot Citroen) has taken over Opel/ Vauxhall. With the new addition, which generated revenue of €17.7 billion in 2016, PSA will become the second-largest automotive company in Europe, with close to a 17 per cent market share.
General Motors Co. and PSA Group today announced an agreement under which GM’s Opel/Vauxhall subsidiary and GM Financial’s European operations will join the PSA Group in a transaction valuing these activities at €1.32 billion( €650m in cash and €670m in PSA share warrants) and €0.9 billion, respectively. PSA and BNP Paribas have agreed to jointly acquire Opel/ Vauxhall’s captive financing activities and have entered into a long-term strategic partnership around the Opel and Vauxhall brands.
PSA Group expects his strong and balanced presence in its home markets will serve as the basis of profitable growth worldwide. It has vowed to return Opel and its British Vauxhall brand to profit.
Crucially, the transaction also sees GM retain most of Opel’s pensions deficit, estimated by analysts at $10 billion. It is however reported that some smaller pension funds will be transferred to PSA, along with a €3 billion payment to cover their full settlement, the companies said today. GM will also take an accounting charge of $4 billion to $4.5 billion in relation to the deal, which expected to close in late 2017.
“We are proud to join forces with Opel/Vauxhall and are deeply committed to continuing to develop this great company and accelerating its turnaround,” said Carlos Tavares, chairman of the Managing Board of PSA. “We respect all that Opel/Vauxhall’s talented people have achieved as well as the company’s fine brands and strong heritage. We intend to manage PSA and Opel/Vauxhall capitalizing on their respective brand identities. Having already created together winning products for the European market, we know that Opel/Vauxhall is the right partner. We see this as a natural extension of our relationship and are eager to take it to the next level.”
“We are confident that the Opel/Vauxhall turnaround will significantly accelerate with our support, while respecting the commitments made by GM to the Opel/Vauxhall employees,” continued Mr. Tavares.
The transaction should allow substantial economies of scale and synergies in purchasing, manufacturing and R&D. Annual synergies of €1.7 Bn are expected by 2026 – of which a significant part is expected to be delivered by 2020, accelerating Opel/Vauxhall’s turnaround. Leveraging the successful partnership with GM, PSA expects Opel/Vauxhall to reach a recurring operating margin of 2 per cent by 2020 and 6 per cent by 2026, and to generate a positive operational free cash flow4 by 2020.
The transaction is another step in GM’s ongoing work to transform the company, which has delivered three years of record performance and a strong 2017 outlook, and returned significant capital to shareholders. It will strengthen GM’s core business, support its continued deployment of resources to higher-return opportunities including in advanced technologies driving the future, and unlock significant value for shareholders.
GM will also participate in the future success of the combined entity through its ownership of warrants to purchase shares of PSA. GM and PSA also expect to collaborate in the further deployment of electrification technologies and existing supply agreements for Holden and certain Buick models will continue, and PSA may potentially source long-term supply of fuel cell systems from the GM/Honda joint venture.