Audi recently announced that it has reached an agreement to purchase the Italian sports bike manufacturer Ducati to confirm earlier reports. The German carmaker said the transaction for the acquisition of Ducati will be completed as soon as necessary authorizations are granted.
Audi did not disclose the details of the purchase of the Ducati from the Investindustrial Spa but according to sources, the four-ring car brand paid around 860 million to 1.13 billion euros.
Rupert Standler, the topman of Audi commented that Ducati is a premium motorcycle brand that is very popular across the globe and has a long history of building sporty bikes. Ducati also has expertise in using lightweight material construction and powerful engines, and is among the most profitable sport bike manufacturers in the world. And because of all these, Ducati will be an excellent part of Audi.
Experts though are questioning the purchase and doubt what Ducati can contribute for Audi or the Volkswagen Group as a whole. Some say that the Ducati brand does not warrant a good business case for the car manufacturer. The business forecasters also say that the Ducati will just be a trophy in the cabinet for Aud and will not improve its business model.
Ducati is another major Italian brand to be purchased by the Volkswagen Group following the acquisition of Italdesign and Lamborghini.
The Italian motorcycle brand is headquartered in Bologna but also has a production plant in Thailand. In 2011, Ducati delivered 42,000 units and has a revenue of about $361 million. It has an employee base of 1,100 people.