Say Hello to Sberbank

While many of the headlines regarding the GM Board of Directors’ recommendation that a majority of Opel has it that Magna International is the customer, the 55% stake in the New Opel is to be acquired by Magna and Sberbank.

While many of the headlines regarding the GM Board of Directors’ recommendation that a majority of Opel has it that Magna International is the customer, the 55% stake in the New Opel is to be acquired by Magna and Sberbank.

Huh?

Sberbank is, according to its own information, “the largest credit institution in Russia and CIS [Commonwealth of Independent States], accounting for about a quarter of the aggregate Russian banking assets and a third of banking capital.” What’s more, “As of 1 June 2009, Sberbank accounted for more than 50% of retail deposits and had a 31% share in Russian loan market.” It was founded in 1841.

S

The arrangement—which, of course, needs to have Ts crossed and Is dotted—will have GM with a 35% stake and employees with 10%.

According to a GM press release:

“The agreement will keep Opel/Vauxhall a fully integrated part of GM’s global product development organization, allowing all parties to benefit from the exchange of technology and engineering resources. . . . Participating in GM’s global technology development and purchasing organizations secures important economies of scale for Opel/Vauxhall and other GM brands. For example, vehicles that represent new propulsion technologies, such as the Ampera extended-range electric vehicle, can only be brought to market in a joint effort.”

No word on those intellectual property concerns that had reportedly delayed this decision.