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VW History 9

In the meantime at Porsche, there has been a radical change. Since the Porsche family and Piech no longer control the factory directly, salaried managers now do the work. Wiedeking, the provisionally last one, became chairman of the board just at that time when Porsche was going through a pretty hard period. The irony of it all is, that Piech placed Wiedeking in this position, against the wishes of the otherwise always dominant Porsche family. This measure proved successful, you can read more about the stages in the the history of Porsche. Porsche became the most profitable car manufacturer of all. In the end they were showing a 3 billion profit. Now, what was to be done with it? Pay it out as dividends? Hide it somewhere as a reserve? Indeed, a car company is not a bank. Wiedeking, who was recently a bit too pompous anyway, cooked up, together with his finance director, Holger Härter, a far-reaching plan.

He wanted to use the 3 billion and further borrowed monies, to buy up VW-shares, until he had gathered together 75%. With this oppressive majority he would then have access to the VW-savings of 13 billion, which he would then use to pay his debts. Why exactly VW?, because the connection had, over the last few years become consolidated once again. As an example, there is the Porsche Cayenne, which was built by Porsche on the Touareg platform. Alone, they could never have mastered the development of an all-wheel drive vehicle. One only needs to compare the price of the Cayenne with that of the Panamera, which actually had less technology, but far more Porsche components, which made it substantially more expensive. After all, Porsche is dependent on VW and sees itself under pressure as far as the whole transaction is concerned.

You've guessed it from today's perspective, in the end it didn't work. The reality had overtaken the theory. Thus e.g., at Porsche, they assumed that the EU would no longer tolerate the blocking minority of Lower Saxony. The path to sole power would have been free. Unfortunately (or thank goodness?) the EU decided otherwise. They also underestimated the power and pressure made by the, after all 360.000 VW-employees, if Scania is included. Then in 2008, there was the completely unpredictable banking- and stock market crisis. Although Porsche had collected a great many VW-shares, it was in trouble because of the borrowed billions, before they could pay it back with VW-money.

In the meantime, the two managers at Porsche caused a stir. The VW-ordinary shares reached unprecedented heights, and Porsche achieved the highest turnover of all times, indeed, not with the sale of sports cars, which due to the crisis, dropped by 30%. In the end the debts were strangling and also the investor Kathar who was brought in, could not save Wiedeking's skin. He had to resign and his position was taken over by VW-boss, Winterkorn. Hans-Peter Porsche turned his seat on the board over to a Kathar representative, who would in future, have 17%. Now the two families, Porsche and Piech owned, instead of the Porsche company, 51% of the VW-shares. Porsche will probably become the 10th VW-subsidiary, indeed, also one of the most attractive.

One says it might perhaps Ferdinand Piëch's last great act as Chairman of the Supervisory Board, to save VW against access of Porsche. Bizarre is the fact that just Piech, the Wiedeking also recruits, at the end must dethrone him. After Piechs wrong choice for Pischetsrieder an Audi board member will once again successor, namely Martin Winterkorn, who seems to be in line with Piech. After all, the consolidated net profit with nearly 16 billion is higher than ever in 2011. The merger with MAN should also be completed soon. At the moment, the shares are 45 percent at Scania and 56 percent at MAN. The collaboration with Suzuki may well be regarded as strained, although VW sticks to its share of almost 20 percent.

Deliveries in 2012
Europeca. 45%
Asiaca. 35%
North America9%
South America11%

Is VW nor the corporate group, the beyond its function as a pure employer, still has an importance for employees. Since VW wants to reach the world top position, the work situation has become tougher. Because VW still produces expensive, although the time for producing a VW Golf has dropped by almost 30 percent since 2008. The feeling of being safe and secure all round for his life, has been lost not only at VW employees. The group also relies on contract workers and pays eg via VW 5000 different wages for comparable work. What remains is a sense of togetherness perhaps in the upper, or is it just a common passion for the topic of 'car'.

The matter with Porsche comes to a good end in 2013, despite the claims cheated sentient investors. With the tenth daughter MAN it's going well, where acquired for 3.4 billion euros approximately 56 percent of the shares last year and, for example, ordinary shares were increased (with voting rights) to 73 percent this year. One is thus no longer far away from the important 75% mark. Also Seat seems finally to gain a foothold with new models and more striking style.

At 5 percent the sales quantity can be increased in 2013. One is very close to it to Toyota and GM, but the also defend mightily themselves. No, not Europe or even North America has brought the growth, but China, where one has overtaken GM for the first time and is number 1. The good 16 percent more must compensate that, what one has lost somewhere by opposing economy. Consequently, VW invested by far the most with 16 billion in China.

In U.S. not only the economic situation seems to be to blame for the debacle of 4 percent market share (13 percent worldwide). Although one has with the Passat both an affordable and reasonably spacious vehicle, but has not given to it the annual facelift, that one is used in USA. Already a lot of money is invested and a new factory built, but one did not respond to attacks by competitors.

The person responsible for this had to go. With the impressive sum of 7 billion euro one will counteract against the red. A large SUV is on the way. And the Golf shall built from now in Puebla (Mexico). Whether there you have been waiting on it? Even such a vague hope the car world connects with the electric drive. VW is once again quite late, but enormously. Can the considerably cheaper up! snatch away buyers the BMW i3? Or very much advertising pays off in the end?

VW subsidiaries 2013
VW commercial vehicles, Audi, Skoda, Seat, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini, Porsche, MAN, Scania, Ducati

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Translator: Don Leslie - Email:

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