By Scott Kanowsky
Investing.com — Shares in Volkswagen AG (ETR:VOWG) rose on Tuesday after the German automaking giant confirmed plans to pursue a massive initial public offering of shares in the Porsche AG sportscar brand.
In a statement released late Monday, VW said its supervisory board was aiming to list the shares on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange at the end of this month or the beginning of October. The move is expected to be finalized by the end of 2022, but is still “subject to further capital market developments.”
“This is a historic moment for Porsche. We believe an IPO would open up a new chapter for us with increased independence as one of the world’s most successful sports car manufacturers,” said Porsche and VW chief executive officer Oliver Blume.
Porsche may potentially attract a valuation of between €60B – €85B, according to media reports, making it one of the largest ever European IPOs despite recent market turmoil and lingering doubts over the structure of the listing.
In the planned flotation, 12.5% of shares in Porsche will be made available to new investors, although none will carry voting rights. VW has said the Qatar Investment Authority has already expressed “strong interest” in purchasing a part of this stake.
Retail investors in Germany, Austria, France, Italy, Spain, and Switzerland will also be able to purchase preferred shares, VW added.
Meanwhile, Porsche Automobil Holding SE (ETR:PSHG_p) – the holding company of the major VW stakeholders, the Porsche-Piëch families – would snap up a minority stake of 25% plus one share in the brand at a 7.5% premium on its debut price. It would subsequently retake direct control over the business behind the “Taycan” and “911”, which it lost to VW in 2012.
VW has previously said the listing will give the company greater financial flexibility in its ongoing transition toward electric mobility.
If the IPO proves successful, VW will convene an extraordinary general meeting in December during which it will propose to its shareholders a special one-time dividend backed by funds raised from the flotation.