Fiat SpA Works to Expand Chrysler Hold


Bloomberg News - February 12, 2013

Fiat SpA is said to be discussing financing options with banks to strengthen its balance sheet in preparation to buy the Chrysler Group LLC stake it doesn’t own.

Find out what CEO Sergio Marchionne is working on.

Sergio Marchionne, chief executive officer of both automakers, has held talks with banks to help pay for at least some of the 41.5 percent held by the United Auto Workers medical benefits trust for Chrysler retirees, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the talks are private. A final deal may take months because Fiat and the trust disagree over the value of the shares, they said.

Marchionne is evaluating options that include a bridge loan to complete the deal, two of the people said. The Italian carmaker may pay around 2.23 billion euros ($2.98 billion) to buy the remaining stake, according to an estimate from Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which sees a deal possible within 12 months.