Timeline: Twists and turns in Opel's ownership

Thu Jun 9, 2011 7:50am EDT

The headquarters of German car manufacturer Opel are pictured in Ruesselsheim, 20km from Frankfurt, June 10, 2011. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach

The headquarters of German car manufacturer Opel are pictured in Ruesselsheim, 20km from Frankfurt, June 10, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Kai Pfaffenbach

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(Reuters) - General Motors is considering putting European arm Opel up for sale again, two German magazines reported.

Following is a timeline of key recent events at GM and Opel, which was founded in 1863 and bought by the U.S. group in 1929:


June - GM files for bankruptcy.

July - GM emerges from bankruptcy, majority owned by the U.S. government and saying it would focus on four core brands.

September 10 - GM agrees to the sale of a 55 percent stake in Opel to a group led by Canada's Magna International Inc.

November 3 - GM reverses decision and instead says it will keep control of Opel.

November 23 - New Opel chief Nick Reilly says it will cost 3.3 billion euros to rehabilitate the unit.


February 9, 2010 - Opel asks Germany for 1.5 billion euros in state aid to fund 4,000 job cuts.

March 2 - GM says it will triple its funding of Opel to 1.9 billion euros in equity and loans and cut its request for state aid, in a bid to win over European governments. It increases its funding estimate for Opel to just over 3.7 billion euros.

March 12 - Britain says it will provide a 270 million pound loan guarantee to help safeguard the company's Vauxhall operations in Britain and other operations in Europe.

April 30 - GM says it expects to incur costs of 400 million euros for termination benefits covering workers at the Antwerp, Belgium plant it could close by the end of 2010.

May 7 - Reilly says he is hoping Germany would guarantee 90 percent of just 1.3 billion euros in loans after talks with other European governments yielded more help than expected.

June 7 - Spain and the Aragon regional government will provide Opel with 300 million euros in aid.

June 9 - German Economy Minister Rainer Bruederle rejects Opel's request for Berlin to backstop 1.1 billion euros ($1.5 billion) of its borrowing.

June 16 - Opel withdraws all requests for aid from European governments.

October 4 - GM confirms Opel plant in Antwerp will close at the end of 2010.


June 9 - Auto Bild and Spiegel Online say possible buyers for Opel may be Chinese carmakers or Volkswagen, which has a war chest of almost 20 billion euros.

(Writing by Michael Shields and Maria Sheahan; Additional writing and editing by David Cutler, London Editorial Reference Unit; Editing by David Holmes)

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