China's Geely buys Ford's Volvo car unit

The takeover underscores China’s arrival as a major force in the global auto industry and ends nearly two years of talks with Geely over Volvo — the last sale from Ford’s former premier group, which also held Aston Martin, Jaguar and Land Rover.

“Today represents a milestone in the history of Geely,” Geely Chairman Li Shufu told a news conference, adding that Volvo Cars would remain a separate company with its own management team based in Sweden. Such a deal would have been nearly unimaginable a few years ago for the Chinese carmaker, which on 2009 forecasts has a turnover of only 16 per cent of Volvo’s, and has just over half the workforce. The deal highlights in particular the big opportunities that have emerged from the financial crisis for smaller players. Tiny Dutch sports car maker Spyker clinched a deal in January to buy Sweden’s Saab from General Motors Co. Geely said it had secured all the necessary financing to complete the deal.

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