09 July 2007

For two weeks only: Jag, Land Rover on sale

Insiders say Ford has set date for prospective buyers

Freelander

Fancy grabbing yourself a nice British car company in the summer sales? Then you'd better get rummaging down the back of the sofa for loose change quick-sharp.

According to Ford insiders, the American giant has given prospective buyers until July 19 to submit bids for Jaguar and Land Rover.

In public at least, Ford is still staying quiet about the sale of its two British marques, with PAG - the company responsible for managing Ford's luxury brands - maintaining that it is exploring 'all the options'.

But sources close to PAG yesterday confirmed that Ford has set a deadline for potential bidders to put their cash on the table.

The list of likely candidates doesn't make good reading for those hoping for a Jag/Landie rebirth: most of the interested parties are believed to be private equity funds, a breed of bidder well known for the chop-em-up-and-sell-em-off style of buy-out. 

However, it's still early stages: financial analysts say that there are reams of paperwork yet to sift through. And while Ford seems keen to sell off both the brands together, investors may be keen to separate profit-making Land Rover from loss-making Jag. 

Whatever the truth, we'll know more in a fortnight's time.

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