Indian SUV specialist Mahindra and IT company Tech Mahindra, both part of the AU$233 billion Mahindra Group, have partnered to secure a controlling stake in styling house Pininfarina.
The deal, announced today after months of talks, brings an end to uncertainty over the legendary Italian design firm’s future.
In 2007, it was revealed that Pininfarina had lost $177 million that financial year, leading stakeholders to invest more than $150 million into the business.
Further funds came as part of an agreement with creditor banks, and numerous debt restructuring deals have helped to keep the company afloat. As a result, 2013 saw Pininfarina turn its first profit since 2004.
Today’s announcement sees Mahindra, and Tech Mahindra, sign an agreement with Pincar for a 76.06 per cent stake in the Pininfarina business, reportedly worth $255 million.
Pininfarina will remain an independent company listed in Milan, and Mahindra plans to invest a further $30 million in the styling house to help in both debt management and business growth.
For Pininfarina, the deal will likely mean more SUVs, following the SEM DX7 concept revealed for the Shanghai motor show earlier this year (pictured above).
“The legendary high-end design credentials of Pininfarina will significantly enhance the design capabilities of the entire Mahindra group,” Chairman Anand Mahindra said in a statement.
“Given the increasing design sensibilities of today’s consumers, product design will greatly influence customer choice.”
The deal is expected to be finalised in the first half of 2016.