Marchionne Said Fiat Close to Agree With VEBA on Price for Chrysler’s Shares image

Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne said the automaker might agree with VEBA on a price for the 41.5% stake in Chrysler.

Fiat and VEBA, Chrysler’s minority shareholder, have failed to reach a consensus regarding a price for Chrysler’s stake, but Marchionne said that Fiat might reach a deal with VEBA to avoid the prospect of an initial public offering (IPO) for the trust’s share. VEBA, a health-care trust affiliated with the United Autoworkers’ Union, has the right to offer part of its Chrysler stake in a public offering on the New York Stock Exchange.

“It’s highly unlikely that, forced with a real market test (of an IPO), that Fiat and VEBA will disagree on (Chrysler’s) value,” said Marchionne at a press conference at the Geneva car show.

“It’s highly unlikely that, forced with a real market test (of an IPO), that Fiat and VEBA will disagree on (Chrysler’s) value,” he said at a press conference at the Geneva car show. Marchionne said he would be ‘more than happy’ to help make any future IPO a success, but he would prefer the Italian automaker to buy VEBA’s stake in Chrysler as soon as possible.

“The faster we do it, the better it is. It’s up to them,” said Marchionne.