Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne said he is currently working “diligently” on preparing a possible share sale by Fiat’s U.S. unit Chrysler, as the parent company’s long-term desire is to own it 100 percent.
Chrysler last month was forced to file papers to list its shares held by a union-related healthcare trust on the New York Stock Exchange in a move called as an Initial Public Offering (IPO). The Italian automaker and the UAW-backed fund – which owns Chrysler shares following the US automaker’s 2009 bankruptcy process – have been at odds in regards to the sales figure Fiat SpA needs to pay to acquire the remaining stock.
“We have filed, it’s a process we will work at diligently,” said Marchionne on a quarterly earnings conference call. “We are ready to execute the Chrysler IPO within 2013.”
But Fiat still aims to own 100 % of Chrysler, he said in reply to a question about whether his goal had changed. That means that if the US unit goes through with the IPO it would need to fight for the shares with other interested investors. Fiat, which rescued back in 2009 the third-largest US automaker from bankruptcy is now in the need of rescuing itself. The maker, which heavily relies on the core European market has been hit by the region’s downturn, which prompted sales falling to record lows.