Volkswagen mulling Porsche IPO to help fund shift to electric – reports

Speculation about listing comes amid reports of Porsche and Piëch families considering their VW stake

Volkswagen is still considering a stock market listing of its luxury sports car brand Porsche, according to reports, as it looks to raise capital for a costly shift towards electric vehicles.

Estimates for what Porsche could be worth as a standalone company range between €45bn and €90bn (£38bn and £77bn).

Speculation about what could be a record-breaking Porsche listing has surfaced over the year, but no decision has been made, due to a complex stakeholder setup, sources told the Reuters news agency, adding it was unclear whether a listing would happen.

Earlier, Handelsblatt reported that the Porsche and Piëch families, who control Volkswagen’s largest shareholder Porsche SE, are considering selling part of their VW stake to fund a substantial shareholding in a possible Porsche IPO.

The families, who own 31.4% of Volkswagen shares and have 53.3% of voting rights via Porsche SE, could sell enough shares to raise roughly €15bn, the German newspaper said.

They would remain the largest shareholder in Volkswagen, Handelsblatt added, ahead of the state of Lower Saxony, which holds a 11.8% equity stake and 20% of voting rights.

Porsche SE called the report “pure speculation”, without giving further comment. Volkswagen declined to comment.

Volkswagen preference shares, which have fallen significantly in recent weeks due to a leadership tussle, closed up 8.6% at the top of Germany’s benchmark DAX index.
Porsche SE shares closed 8.5% higher.

The proposed ownership reshuffle would loosen the grip of the Porsche and Piech families on Volkswagen, Europe’s largest carmaker, in favour of direct ownership of the sports car brand founded by their ancestor Ferdinand Porsche, which dates back to 1931.

Asked about a potential listing of Porsche in October, its chief executive, Herbert Diess, said that Volkswagen was constantly reviewing its portfolio, but gave no further comment.

Diess will probably stay on as VW CEO although he will cede some responsibilities after a clash with labour leaders, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.

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