Jaguar Still In Play – Along With Land Rover

April 8, 2007
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Ford Motor Co. CEO Alan Mulally reaffirmed his support of the Jaguar brand at the New York Auto Show. But a senior Ford executive tells that the CEO, who came to Ford from Boeing a little over six months ago, has little interest or affection for Jaguar and Land Rover. The likelihood, said the executive, is a sale of the brands as a unit.

Separately, an advisor to private equity firms who have been circling auto supplier companies, as well as Chrysler Group, says that at least two private equity groups have asked him about Ford’s British brands. Wall Street has pegged the value of Jaguar and Land Rover at about $3 billion at the most. That’s because the acquirer would likely be taking on the companies’ British manufacturing plants, though any deal to acquire the brands may include Ford paying some of the expense of buying out U.K. workers.

“There’s interest for sure,” said the financial advisor.

One former high-ranking Ford executive caught up with on the NYIAS floor, said, “I would buy them for a low enough price, and I just may look to put together a group.”—Jim Burt

Mulally: Turnaround, Jaguar on Track—

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