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Jaguar for sale?

Stephen Beard Aug 3, 2006
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MARK AUSTIN THOMAS: Ford’s appointing an investment banker to sort out some of its unprofitable models and that’s causing some concern in Britain. Speculation is growing in the UK that Ford may put its luxury sports car company Jaguar up for sale. From London, Stephen Beard has the story.


STEPHEN BEARD: Ford says a sell-off isn’t imminent, but the company is now reviewing its worst performing assets: And that’s got to include Jaguar.

Ford bought it for $2.5 billion 16 years ago and it’s lost money for them ever since. That’s in spite of a cash injection of more than $3 billion in recent years.

The very idea that Ford may now sell-off Jaguar is causing car industry types here to blow a gasket. Geoffery Robsinson, a former Jaguar Chief Executive:

GEOFFERY ROBSINSON: Why can’t they make a success of it? They’ve put the money in. They’ve put the effort in. But you can’t really say they’ve been doing it wrongly . . .

The biggest mistake, he says, was to dent Jaguar’s luxury image by using Ford components in many of the models.

Ford’s patience though must be wearing thin. Jaguar sales in the US are down 30% so far this year.

In London, this is Stephen Beard for Marketplace.

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