Volkswagen rumoured to be considering selling Ducati

The locally assembled Ducati Multistrada 1200 was unveiled in Malaysia early last year

The locally assembled Ducati Multistrada 1200 was unveiled in Malaysia early last year

Volkswagen have been in quite a bit of trouble of late and now, with the company still suffering from the diesel auto emissions scandal, sources cited by Reuters suggest that the Volkswagen Audi Group [VAG] are looking to offset some of their "dieselgate" losses by jettisoning the Ducati motorcycle brand.

The logo of Italian motorcycle manufacturer Ducati is seen in Dietlikon, Switzerland October 11, 2016.

The sources said the VW Group had gone as far as hiring investment bank Evercore to determine what options were available, and mentioned motorcycle companies in China and India as potential suitors along with fellow Italian firm Investindustrial, the private equity group that owns a big chunk of Aston Martin.

Volkswagen group has started to approach the potential buyers of the Ducati brand and Hero MotoCorp is one of them.

There was no response from Audi or Evercore when approached by Reuters.

The motorbike group may appeal to peers such as Chinese groups, India's Hero HROM.NS or investors such as the consortium which bought British sports auto maker Aston Martin in 2007, the sources said.

The article states that, before interest, taxes and depreciation, Ducati's annual earnings of around 100 million Euros could lead to an overall evaluation as high as 1.5 billion Euros.

Should Ducati fail to find a buyer, Volkswagen may consider a stock market flotation to raise funds.

When Audi bought Ducati in 2012, specialists questioned the point of the purchase, saying it has no economic or industrial logic.

VW said last June it would review its portfolio of assets and brands, rekindling speculation among analysts that "non-core" businesses such as Ducati or a diesel-engine business for machinery could be up put for sale.

A long list for a company that is moving full steam ahead, having recorded a turnover of 593 million euro in 2016.

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