Investindustrial reportedly close to buying Aston Martin stake image

Private equity fund Investindustrial is closing in on an agreement to buy an Aston Martin stake to ensure financing of the renowned sports-car maker.

According to two people familiar with the matter quoted by Bloomberg, London-based Investindustrial has trumped Indian automaker Mahindra & Mahindra to invest in Aston Martin. The unnamed sources said a final agreement has not yet been signed.

One of the people said the exact size of the stake transaction, which values the automaker at about 750 million pounds ($1.21 billion) including debt, has not yet been determined. The deal would provide Aston Martin with a much needed cash infusion to invest in automotive resources in order to compete with Bentley and Ferrari.

According to a report from The Times of India, Mahindra had pulled out of the bidding. Aston Martin is currently owned by Investment Dar, a Kuwait-based investment group that bought the British carmaker from Ford in 2007 for 503 million pounds.
For Investindustrial, the deal would mean returning to high-end vehicle manufacturing after selling Italian motorcycle maker Ducati to VW’s Audi this year for 860 million euros ($1.11 billion).

Although Mahindra’s original bid was higher, Investindustrial’s offer includes plans to use technology and car parts from AMG, the Mercedes-Benz unit that makes sports cars, two people familiar with the talks said last week.