Porsche rebuffs VW offer, calling deal ‘unfeasible’ image

Porsche rebuffed Volkswagen’s proposed purchase of 49 percent of the sports car maker as part of a merger, saying a sale of the unit would incur a financial penalty that rendered the deal impractical.

“It’s not that we’re rejecting the offer,” said a Porsche spokesman, Frank Gaube. “It’s that the offer is unfeasible.”

As a first step toward a merger, Volkswagen has called for Porsche to sell it a 49 percent interest in its sports car business for as much as 4 billion euros, or $5.6 billion, the newsweekly Der Spiegel reported over the weekend without identifying its source.

The Qatari Investment Authority, a sovereign wealth fund that has been negotiating financial aid to Porsche, would then buy options from Porsche that give it a right to about 20 percent of VW shares.

But Gaube said that the sale of the unit, Porsche A.G., “would immediately trigger repayment of 12.5 billion euros” ($17 billion) on a syndicated loan put together by 15 banks, a financial burden that would render the merger unworkable.