After a prolonged battle involving various parties across Atlantic and Baltic, Canadian car-parts maker Magna International Inc (MGA) and its Russian partner OAO Sberbank won 55-per cent stake in General Motors Co's German unit Adam Opel GmbH and its UK sister company Vauxhall.
Although issues like financing still need to be resolved, the buyer favoured by Germany, and Sberbank will now bear the task of the four Opel plants in Germany (Eisenach, Bochum and Kaiserslautern), and its relatively small outfit Vauxhall in the UK, GM said in a statement.
The German government will chip in loan guarantees of €.5 billion ($6.6 billion) to resurrect the plants, employ almost 25,000 of GM Europe's 55,000-strong European work force.
The sale is expected to be completed by 30 November, and Opel probably will return to profit in 2011. expects the Opel loan guarantees to be repaid by 2014.
''Several key issues will be finalised over the next few weeks to secure the binding agreements, including the written support of the labor unions to support the deal with the necessary cost restructuring for viability and the finalisation of a definitive financing package from the German government," GM said.
GM stressed that it still needs union agreement - in writing - for the restructuring of the four Opel plants in Germany. The powerful IG Metall union said that it expected the negotiations to be ''tough.''