September 18, 2018 / 11:51 AM / 3 months ago

Volkswagen's truck unit says no final decision taken on IPO

HANOVER, Germany (Reuters) - Volkswagen (VOWG_p.DE) sought to dampen expectations on Tuesday that it would soon list its truck unit Traton on the stock market, saying no final decision had been taken.

Volkswagen has taken steps to prepare Traton for a possible initial public offering, and a floatation would allow the unit to tap capital markets to help it build a global trucks business and challenge rivals Daimler (DAIGn.DE) and Volvo (VOLVb.ST).

Traton Chief Executive Andreas Renschler downplayed expectations that it could soon list the business, telling journalists at the IAA truck fair in Hanover that all options remained open and the company would decide in due time.

“An initial public offering is just one option of many,” he said.

Volkswagen said on Monday the carmaker’s supervisory board had decided to convert Traton’s legal structure to a Societas Europaea (SE) and to shortly mandate investment banks and legal advisors for a possible IPO.

When asked about possible acquisitions, Renschler said all options remained open but said it had no plans to increase its stake in U.S. truck maker Navistar (NAV.N), in which it already owns a 16.85 percent.

Earlier on Tuesday, Traton said it would form a joint venture between its MAN brand and Sinotruk, part of China’s CNHTC Group 000951.SZ, to develop a heavy-duty truck for the Chinese market.

It has also announced a joint venture with Toyota’s truck-making arm Hino Motors Ltd <7205. T> for procurement and said the two firms would co-operate in e-mobility to speed up the development of new vehicles.

Reporting by Jan Schwartz; writing by Caroline Copley; editing by Tassilo Hummel and Maria Sheahan

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