Zhejiang Geely Holding Group announced it will invest $151.7 million by 2018 in Manganese Bronze Holdings, the maker of London black cabs, to turn the company profitable.
The investment plan was announced by Chairman Li Shufu, who said that he sees Manganese Bronze exporting the famous black cabs to other countries too. Manganese Bronze entered administration in 2012, for 11.04 million pounds on a debt-free basis, and Zhejiang Geely agreed to buy the company and make it profitable again.
Victor Yang, a spokesman for Geely, said Manganese Bronze will become a profitable company in one year, compared with the previous target of three years, as the cab maker will expand its sales to overseas markets. Manganese Bronze has already sold 200 cabs in Saudi Arabia and Australia, and it will also sell its vehicles in China. Currently, about 500 black cabs are operating in the Asian market, in cities such as Guangzhou, Beijing and Ningbo.
At the beginning of this month Zhejiang Geely announced it offers 11.04 million pounds ($17.5 million) to purchase Manganese Bronze Holdings on a debt-free basis. By purchasing the UK automaker and Volvo Cars in Sweden, Zhejiang Geely plans to secure its expansion.
“We are determined to restore the fortunes of this totemic marque,” Geely said in the statement. “We are a long-term and committed investor and we believe the illustrious past of the London black cab can be matched by a successful and healthy future.”