Vito Corleone, in the Godfather, made offers that people couldn’t well refuse — let’s just say, all things considered, it was better for them to accept.
It seems that elite British sports car maker Aston Martin, saw the writing on the wall, when it accepted to a change of management with a US$655 million injection, partly from a consortium led by Canadian billionaire Lawrence Stroll, CGTN online reported.
The brand, which has gained fame for its use in the James Bond 007 movie franchise, will also end its partnership with the Red Bull Racing Formula One team and instead become title sponsor of Racing Point from 2021, the report said.
The team, which was known as Force India until it was bought by Stroll in 2018, will be renamed Aston Martin Racing. The initial deal is for a 10-year partnership, the report said.
Stroll and his partners, including Lord Anthony Bamford (chairman of JCB) and Silas Chou, will invest US$238 million into the struggling motor company for a 16.7% stake. Stroll will also become executive chairman and a board member, the report said.
The remaining US$417 million will come from a “rights issue” for shareholders to buy additional securities (such as equity and shares) in the firm, the report said.
The 45.6 million new shares will be sold to the consortium at £4 (US$5.25) — which is a steep reduction from the (US$24.92) asking price during the October 2019 IPO, which is regarded as a failure and was blamed on poor sales over the past year, the report said.
The poor sales are also the reason for this large investment from Stroll and partners.
“The difficult trading performance in 2019 resulted in severe pressure on liquidity, which has left the company with no alternative but to seek substantial additional equity financing,” now-former chair of the board Penny Hughes said in a statement.