Fiat officials will today meet with Opel representatives and German government ministers to discuss a takeover deal for General Motors’ European brand.
Ahead of the meeting, Fiat chairman Luca di Montezemolo said Opel would be an “ideal partner” and that a takeover was an “extraordinary opportunity.”
Fiat Group CEO Sergio Marchionne will meet the German economy and foreign ministers today to assess the viability of a deal. In an interview with the Financial Times, Mr. Marchionne said that such a move would be a “marriage made in heaven.”
However, Canadian car parts maker Magna International has also put forward what the German government has called a “rough concept for a commitment with Opel.”
German Economy Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg has said that any investor would have to present a plan that kept Opel plants open in order to secure government support.
The news of Fiat’s talks with Opel follows its union with Chrysler last week, after the U.S. company’s move into Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Like Chrysler, Opel’s parent company GM faces potential bankruptcy and has been given until June 1 to restructure by the U.S. government.
Opel has said it needs 3.3 billion Euros ($4.4 billion) to get through the economic crisis, but the German government has encouraged it to find an investor rather than put up the money itself.