PARIS Jan 29 PSA Peugeot Citroen
Chairman Thierry Peugeot has written to his cousin Robert
Peugeot, head of the FFP family holding, to criticise
a planned tie-up with China's Dongfeng Motor that
would dilute the family's influence, Les Echos reported.
Peugeot's board earlier this month approved a tie-up
underpinned by a 3 billion euro ($4.1 billion) capital increase
that would also see the French government subscribe to the share
issue on the same terms as Dongfeng.
"I am worried about the strategy of withdrawal from Peugeot
that you seem to want to carry out," Thierry Peugeot said in the
letter dated Jan. 27, which the business daily obtained and
published on its website on Wednesday.
"I believe that the Peugeot family must continue to
accompany Peugeot and not lose interest in it."
The Peugeot clan currently controls the carmaker through a
25 percent stake commanding 38 percent of voting rights, but the
deal approved in principle by the board would give the family,
French government and Dongfeng equal holdings, a source with
knowledge of the matter has said.
With market conditions showing signs of improvement, Thierry
Peugeot has pushed an alternative deal replacing the
government's role with a bigger market issue, potentially
allowing the family to remain the biggest shareholder, the
"Shareholders and the market would today be able to fully
support the capital increase that the group needs," Thierry
Peugeot said in the letter.
While the difference between the two cousins over strategy
has been widely known, the letter makes explicit Thierry
Peugeot's objections to the plan.
Thierry Peugeot said the negotiations about the future of
the carmaker had been carried out without the FFP's board and
without direct contact between it and Dongfeng, leading to a
"potentially very negative result" for the FFP.
Thierry and Robert Peugeot were not immediately reachable
($1 = 0.7329 euros)
(Reporting by James Regan and Gilles Guillaume; Editing by