James Bond’s favourite carmaker, Aston Martin, is at the centre of feverish takeover speculation.
Jaguar Land Rover, Toyota, plus Indian and Chinese car-makers, are all said to be eyeing a full or partial collaborative stake in the loss-making UK supercar-maker.
Aston Martin insists the firm “is not up for sale, full stop.”
But City and automotive experts remain to be convinced and predict more action in the weeks to come – centred on the Kuwaiti investment company Investment Dar which has a 64 percent holding in the manufacturer.
Takeover speculation moved up several gears when financial agency Bloomberg reported that Aston Martin’s main shareholder was seeking new ‘suitors’.
Notably, Aston Martin’s factory at Gaydon in Warwickshire is next to the design and engineering centre of Jaguar Land Rover, which is owned by India’s TATA group.
Aston Martin posted a pre-tax loss of £33.1-million (R469-million) last year, compared to pre-tax profits of £6.9-million (R98-million) in 2010.
The company also spent £2.75m to bring production of the Rapide model from Austria to its main UK factory. -Daily Mail