Ford Motor Company said yesterday that a consortium led by Zhejiang Geely Group Holding is its preferred bidder in the ongoing discussions concerning the possible sale of its Swedish unit Volvo Car Corporation.
Ford said that while it will be engaging in more detailed and focused negotiations with Geely, no final decisions have been made.
Ford and Volvo will maintain appropriate communications with key stakeholders, such as Volvo's employees, unions and the Swedish government, during the ongoing process, said the Dearborn, Michigan-based carmaker.
''Volvo's management team welcomes today's announcement as a positive step forward,'' Volvo CEO Stephen Odell said. ''At Volvo, we are continuing to keep our attention firmly fixed on engineering and building great Volvo cars, to reduce our cost base and to return the business to sustainable profitability at the earliest possible opportunity.''
This month, it was reported that a US-based Crown Consortium led by turnround specialist and a former Ford director, Michael Dingman and Shamel Rushwin, a former executive with Ford and Chrysler had also entered the fray to bid for Volvo. (See: US consortium rivals Geely in bidding for Volvo: report)
It was rumoured that Geely had offered more than $2 billion for Volvo and the Crown Consortium's bid was far lower than Geely's, but both potential buyers have said that they would make an additional investment of $3 billion in the Swedish car company.