A consortium led by the VW Group has launched a $3.4 billion (£2.4bn) takeover of vehicle rental company Europcar.
Europe’s largest carmaker has joined forces with Attestor and Pon Holdings to seal the deal, with an offer price of 0.50 euro per share being proposed.
This could be topped up by a 0.01 euro per share supplement if 90% of shareholders take up the bid. Europcar's board had recommended the offer.
Europcar has more than 3,500 sites across 140-plus countries and a fleet in excess of 350,000 vehicles in 2019, serving over 5 million customers per year.
The minimum acceptance threshold for the takeover offer is 67% and existing shareholders holding 68% in Europcar have committed to accept the takeover offer.
Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess said: “The mobility market is changing rapidly as customers increasingly demand new and innovative on-demand mobility solutions, such as subscription and sharing models to complement car ownership.
“Europcar provides advanced fleet management capabilities as well as a broad network of stations at major airports, railway stations and city locations and will help accelerate Volkswagen’s delivery of its ambitious mobility services targets.
“Together with our consortium partners Attestor and Pon, we will support the development and transformation of Europcar’s business and selectively add further services from Volkswagen Group brands.”
Last month, Volkswagen unveiled its new 2030 strategy, singling out software and services as one of the drivers of the global automotive market.
Caroline Parot, CEO of Europcar Mobility Group, said: “This agreement has the potential to supercharge this growth, by enabling our Group to strengthen its customer proposition, by developing sustainable alternatives to vehicle ownership.
“For our customers as well as for our employees, two global mobility service companies joining forces today makes a lot of sense and has great value creation potential: together, we could have a big impact on how mobility ecosystems transform and adapt to mobility current and future challenges.”
Alexandre de Juniac, chairman of the board of directors at Europcar Mobilty Group, added: “The board of directors welcomes this agreement: Volkswagen, which is leading the consortium, is a long-standing business partner of our Group, Pon is an expert in international mobility services and Attestor, with its deep transformation capabilities, was a key partner in our financial restructuring.
“Their forces, combined with Europcar Mobility Group’s assets and strategic roadmap, could leverage unique growth opportunities in mobility ecosystems.”