While the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus has caused widespread disruption and blown trillions of dollars out of the global economy, it’s done nothing to quell Volkswagen Traton’s bid to purchase US truck maker Navistar.
In January, Traton made a $US 2.9 billion cash offer to buy Navistar at roughly $US35 a share. Virus-inspired fear has left the stock of both companies in a shambles over the last month and a half, with Navistar having shed close to $US18 per share and Traton more than $11 since the 31st January.
During the company’s annual media conference in mid-March Volkswagen’s chief finance officer Frank Witter said the German truck and auto manufacturer still planned to press forward with a buyout of the American company in which it already owns a 17 percent stake, despite headwinds from a near global shutdown that include the temporary shuttering of some of Volkswagen’s plants.
Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess said despite the current economic condition, his company has not pulled its offer, adding he still believed the acquisition was a good idea.
During his company’s earnings in early March, Navistar CEO Troy Clarke declined to field questions surrounding the Traton offer, but said he planned to “just let the board continue to work through this. We’ll just let the process work.”