Aston Martin, no matter how hard it tries, is always up to its neck in water. No matter how much money they receive, no matter how many collaborations they start up or with whom, their accounts never come out and that, sometimes, makes us think that those responsible are doing things very badly, or that their goals are too ambitious.
When Mr. Stroll arrived it looked like things were going to go the other way, especially with Mercedes helping out with engines and technology, but they were able to launch the Aston Martin DBX just barely and the Valkyrie seems to be a burden of time and, obviously, money. To this, we must add that Mercedes reduced its stake in the company from 11.7 to 9.7%, a move that shows that the Germans do not believe much in the potential of Aston Martin.
The British firm also has a complicated road ahead. Electrification will take a large sum of money and the British do not have the liquidity to waste. Perhaps the new investor, who has become the second largest shareholder, will help the company get out of debt. And that majority shareholder is the Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF), the Saudi sovereign fund, which now has 16.5% of the shares of the historic British firm in its possession. Only Lawrence Stroll’s consortium has more Aston Martin shares.
PIF has invested a total of 744 million dollars in the British company, a very high amount that should help pay off the debts that Aston Martin accumulates and, among other things, be able to continue developing cars like the Aston Martin Valhalla. On the other hand, the brand’s shareholders reportedly rejected a larger deal, spearheaded by the Atlas Consortium, a company that includes Chinese automaker Geely or Morgan among its assets. The offer was for more than $1.5 billion.
Today’s announcement marks the latest success in Aston Martin’s evolution, restoring the business and balance we inherited, and accelerating our long-term growth potential. Since I took over as chief executive in 2020, we have made significant progress on our journey to become the world’s most desirable ultra-luxury British performance brand .” –Lawrence Stroll. CEO of Aston Martin in statements to Autocar
Aston Martin has survived bankruptcy seven times since it was founded in 1913, although it has never been able to boast a strong profit income and has therefore always been, to a greater or lesser extent, on the tightrope. Stroll is a pretty successful business guy and he should know how to direct the future of the company, even if he does things like buy a Formula 1 team so that his son can compete and that he will continue to be active despite being a black hole for him. money (and not achieving results that argue its continuity)
As expected, the company will use the new investment for the development of electrical technology and to balance the accounts, that is, to pay debts. We must not forget that the directors of Aston Martin set the deadline for the electrification of the brand in 2030, but the current debt of 1,100 million dollars made it difficult for there to be a future for the brand.
Aston Martin’s electric future is contingent, as one might expect, on reducing that debt and finding a partner to help them develop the technology. The brand, by itself, does not have the economic capacity to carry out the project. And they have to be quick since the date scheduled for their presentation is 2025, we could almost say tomorrow if we take into account the times that are handled in the industry.
At the moment, it is known that Britishvolt is involved in the development and will supply the batteries, but it remains to be seen where the platform on which the whole set will come from. For now, the partner that sounds the most is Mercedes, since they have already signed a collaboration, it would not be difficult to extend the agreement and also cover the platform for electric cars. However, the entry of the Saudi fund into the company’s shareholding brings Lucid into play, since the PIF also has a large part of the North American company.
However, there is more, because Stroll, during the announcement of the new investment by the Saudi fund, mentioned Rimac as a possible potential partner. No further details were given, but he would be the third actor to star in Aston Martin’s electric development. And we must remember that Rimac is currently one of the most powerful electrical technology specialist companies today, having collaborated, for example, in the development of the Porsche Taycan, the Pininfarina Battista, the Audi e-Tron GT, and some models of Hyundai.