Exclusive - Ally near $4 billion unit sale, GM in lead: sources

NEW YORK Fri Nov 9, 2012 11:16pm GMT

An Ally Financial sign is seen on a building in Charlotte, North Carolina May 1, 2012. REUTERS/Chris Keane

An Ally Financial sign is seen on a building in Charlotte, North Carolina May 1, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Chris Keane

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - Ally Financial Inc is nearing a deal to sell its auto financing operations in Europe and Latin America for around $4 billion (2.5 billion pounds), with General Motors Co emerging as the lead bidder if the company decides to sell those operations as a whole, two sources familiar with the situation said.

Ally is still considering whether to split the business geographically - Europe and Latin America - and sell it to two different parties, the sources said on Friday. A deal could come as soon as next week, they added.

Details of an agreement have not yet been finalized and the outcome could still change, the sources said. Ally is still talking to a handful of financial institutions that have made separate bids for its European and Latin American assets, they said.

GM declined to comment. An Ally spokeswoman said: "We continue to be focused on maximizing shareholder value and finding the best solutions for the remaining international operations."

(Reporting By Jessica Toonkel in New York and Rick Rothacker in Charlotte, North Carolina, Editing by Soyoung Kim, Bernard Orr)

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