Ford Motor Co. doesn’t intend to keep a stake in Volvo Cars and is aiming to sell the Swedish automaker by the end of the year, said John Fleming, the U.S. company’s top executive in Europe.
Maintaining a holding in Volvo is “just not something that’s even being considered,” Fleming said in an interview today at Ford’s European headquarters in Cologne, Germany. Ford has been unwinding integration with Volvo for more than a year and is in talks with “a number of parties” about a sale, he said, declining to identify them.
Dearborn, Michigan-based Ford, the only U.S. automaker to decline taking a federal bailout, put Volvo up for sale in December. Ford is seeking about $2 billion for Gothenburg, Sweden-based Volvo, less than a third of what it paid a decade ago, two people with knowledge of the sale said in May.
Chinese automakers Geely Holding Group Co. and Beijing Automotive Industry Holding Co. are among possible bidders, people familiar with the talks have said. Geely wants to buy a majority of Volvo with an unidentified Swedish investor and let Ford keep a stake, Dagens Industri newspaper reported Aug. 6.
The slump in global auto markets “isn’t putting pressure on us from a timing perspective,” said Fleming. “We’re looking to close it in the last quarter of this year, but that’s very loose.”