Fiat Could Own 46% of Chrysler by June

It’s only been a few days since Fiat SpA raised its stake in Chrysler by 5 percent. Now, it seems like the Italian automaker is on the fast track to owning 46 percent of the American giant as early as June of this year, according to Automotive News. The news comes via two unnamed sources with direct links to CEO Sergio Marchionne’s ambitions.

Talks with international investment banks on refinancing Chrysler's debt with the U.S. and Canadian governments are at an advanced stage, so Fiat will soon be able to buy up to 16 percent of Chrysler by the end of June.

"This is the real goal Sergio Marchionne is working at. He wants to do it by June. He might be able to do it a bit earlier,” the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera reported on Thursday.

The CEO recently stated he wants to refinance Chrysler’s debt as soon as possible, and the Autonews source says “it is technically possible” for Fiat to raise its Chrysler ownership to 46 percent. Marchionne has confirmed that he wants a majority stake in the American carmaker by the end of the year, but did not offer details about how the company plans to achieve this target.

Chrysler currently owes the US and Canadian governments $7.4 billion as a result of the loans it received in June 2009 when the carmaker came out of bankruptcy protection and Fiat took control over management. But, according to a company filing made on April 6th, this must be reduced to just $4 billion if Fiat wants the 46 percent stake. In addition, the loan must be fully payed off if the carmaker wants the full majority stake.
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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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