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The Volkswagen Group has reportedly taken the first steps to selling off motorcycle maker Ducati.

Sources have told Reuters that the Volkswagen Group has engaged Evercore, a banking advisory firm, to sound out possible buyers for Ducati.

Last year, Ducati recorded sales of 593 million euros ($852 million), a turnover of around 100 million euros ($144 million) and a profit of roughly 50 million euros ($72 million). Buyers are likely to pay between 1.0 and 1.5 billion euros ($1.4 and $2.2 billion) for the motorcycle brand.

Audi, Volkswagen’s mainstream luxury arm, purchased Ducati for 860 million euros ($1.2 billion) in 2012.

If a suitable buyer can’t be found or a suitable purchase price agreed upon, Volkswagen is apparently willing to list the motorcycle manufacturer on the stock market.

ducati-xdiavel-s
Above: Ducati XDiavel S.

Funds raised by offloading of Ducati would be used to offset some of the costs related the company’s Dieselgate emissions cheating scandal, which could cost the company over $26 billion in fines, compensation, payouts, environmental remediation and fixes.

This money, as well as across-the-board cost cutting efforts, will also help the Volkswagen Group in its pivot towards electric vehicles.

This isn’t the first time that Volkswagen has reportedly considered selling assets to deal with the aftermath of the Dieselgate saga. Back in mid-2016, Bloomberg report said the German automaker was considering Ducati motorcycle and MAN truck divisions.

A few months later, the company went on the record in the German press to state it was “not thinking of selling parts of our brands”.

Volkswagen, Audi and Ducati all gave no comment to Reuters in response to its article.

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