Rolls-Royce Owner Says BMW Deal Is Signed
Britain’s Vickers said it signed an agreement to sell Rolls-Royce Motor Cars to BMW for $567 million, but Volkswagen again pledged an even higher bid for the luxury-car maker. Vickers reached a preliminary accord with BMW on a sale price last month, choosing it over rival German auto maker VW and a group of car enthusiasts eager to keep the prestigious brand in British hands. Vickers executives said they would consider a new bid but questioned why VW has not contacted them directly. Vickers Chairman and Chief Executive Colin Chandler defended the sale of Rolls to a foreign buyer before angry small shareholders at the company’s annual meeting. “Vickers is a medium-sized specialist engineering company and is inappropriate to own Rolls-Royce,” he said. Shareholders must approve the sale at a meeting in June, and analysts said they are not likely to forgo the secure sale to BMW.