General Motors Co on Thursday announced it was selling a 55 percent stake in Opel to Magna and Sberbank.

Highlights: * GM board recommends selling majority stake in Opel * GM says to sell 55 percent stake in new Opel to Magna/Sberbank * GM says agreement on new ownership structure signals fresh start for new Opel * GM says employees to hold 10 percent stake in new Opel * GM says government supports financing through additional state guarantees * GM says several key issues will be finalized over the next few weeks to secure binding agreements on Opel * GM says will seek written support of labor unions for Opel restructuring * GM says expects definitive agreement to be ready to sign within a few weeks, expects closing in months * GM says it would retain 35 percent of Opel under deal