FRANKFURT (Reuters) - General Motors (GM.N) reaffirmed its commitment to its ailing European arm Opel, rejecting on Friday speculation it might be interested in disposing of the loss-making brand to rival Fiat FIA.MI.
“Opel is not for sale. GM fully stands behind Opel,” GM Vice Chairman Stephen Girsky said in a brief statement sent by email.
Earlier on Friday, Italian daily Il Sole-24 Ore wrote in an unsourced report that Fiat FIA.MI Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne is ready to buy Opel if GM’s alliance with France’s Peugeot (PEUP.PA) dissolves.
“Opel is a fully integrated part of GM’s global footprint and vital for GM’s future success in Europe. The GM-PSA alliance is fully on track,” Girsky said in the statement.
Fiat had expressed interest in acquiring Opel — known as Vauxhall in the UK — in 2009, only to see a consortium around Canada’s Magna (MG.TO) be awarded exclusivity in negotiations with GM that later collapsed.
Reporting By Christiaan Hetzner