Volkswagen trucks has confirmed it’s on the look for a new partnership to help make gains in China, adding to its existing deal with Hong Kong’s Sinotruck, while in America the deal with Navistar is coming to a close.
MAN acquired a 25.1 per cent stake in Sinotruck in 2009, but VW trucks boss Andreas Renschler admits the brand wants a stronger foothold in the emerging market.
“We are thinking about how we can better establish ourselves in China,” Renschler said.
“[The Sinotruck] partnership has existed for what seems like forever, with few ups and lots of downs.”
It is believed VW will look to FAW, one of China’s four major manufacturers, to increase its presence the market.
VW’s expansion plans come on the back of the necessary approvals the highly-publicised purchase of a 16.6 per cent stake of Navistar.
The deal includes the framework agreements for a procurement joint venture and strategic technology and supply collaboration.
“This alliance with Volkswagen Truck & Bus marks a significant milestone in our company’s history, and we expect it will create multiple benefits for both companies in both the near and long term,” said Navistar boss Troy Clarke.
“Now that the transaction has closed, we will move quickly to collaborate with an industry-leading, strategic partner to increase our global scale, strengthen our competitiveness, and provide our customers with expanded access to cutting-edge products, technology and services.”
Renschler confirmed the Navistar deal plays a key role in the brand’s global expansion.
“The strategic alliance provides Volkswagen Truck & Bus with access to the all-important North American market. This is a major step toward becoming a global champion,” Renschler said.
“The authorities have given our strategic alliance with Navistar the green light. Our newly-founded purchasing cooperation will begin work immediately. This puts both partners in a stronger position for the future.”
As part of the VW’s $256 million investment, it will take two seats on the board of directors – positions taken by Renschler and CFO Matthias Gründler.
“We are excited to welcome Andreas Renschler and Matthias Gründler to the Navistar Board, and are confident that we will benefit from their deep industry knowledge and fresh perspectives,” said Clarke.
“Their expertise in commercial vehicle production will be invaluable as we strive to become the North American champion in our industry.”
As previously reported, the two brands will also consolidate procurement as well as product and technology development.