Italian automaker Fiat SpA (BIT:F) said on Monday that Chrysler Group LLC would not go public before the end of the year after the Wall St. Journal reported on Sunday that the U.S. automaker would “get an IPO done by mid-December.”
Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne has been fighting to keep Chrysler private against pressure from the United Autoworkers’ Voluntary Employees Benefits Association (UAW VEBA), which owns 41.5 percent of Chrysler and retains the right to demand that at least 16 percent of the company be listed.
The UAW trust and Fiat don’t agree on the value of Chrysler; Fiat says it’s worth about $3 billion, while the union says it should be valued at more than $10 billion. The Journal, citing people close to the matter, said an IPO would raise $1.5 to $2 billion.
The co-ownership of Chrysler was the result of the Auburn Hills, Mich.-base company’s 2009 Chapter 11 reorganization, which cost U.S. taxpayers $1.24 billion through the Auto Industry Financing Program, itself part of the $475 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP).
Responding to the Journal story, Fiat issued a statement to Bloomberg News saying it’s too late to list shares this year. “No assurance can be given as to whether or when an offering will be launched,” the statement read. “Any launch will be subject to market conditions and other relevant considerations.”