Volkswagen Group (VOW3) is the world’s largest automaker. After reporting a record annual sales of 10.97 million vehicles, it has won the championship for the second consecutive year, surpassing Toyota Motor Corporation (TM) to top the list. The car manufacturer’s name literally means “people’s car” and was founded in 1937 by the German government, which was ruled by the Nazi Party at the time. Despite the origins of Volkswagen, the company has grown into a prosperous global car manufacturer known for producing high-quality cars. The company’s total revenue in 2019 was 286.5 billion U.S. dollars, revenue was 15.9 billion U.S. dollars, and the market value was 75.2 billion U.S. dollars. Based on the 1.1342 Euro/U.S. dollar exchange rate on June 9, 2020, these Volkswagen financial data and the data in the following story were converted from Euros to U.S. dollars.
After the outbreak of World War II in 1939, the original Volkswagen factory was converted to produce military equipment and vehicles. Although destroyed by Allied bombing at the end of the war, the factory was rebuilt and mass production of cars began. After Volkswagen sold 60% of its shares in 1960, most of its nationalization was cancelled. Although Volkswagen’s original “Beetle” design and its unusual round shape are classics, the company now produces a wide range of cars, vans and commercial vehicles. Although Volkswagen has a reputation for quality, it was discovered in 2015 that it had installed software in the diesel engine of its vehicle that artificially improved the results in emission tests, and the company was tainted. The scandal led to the recall of millions of cars worldwide, and the company reported a quarterly loss for the first time in 15 years.
Volkswagen has also significantly strengthened and broadened its product line through a series of acquisitions, including manufacturers of luxury cars, sports cars, cheap cars, and heavy trucks and buses. Let’s take a look at 5 key acquisitions of Volkswagen below. The company listed revenue and profits for certain acquisitions, but did not list revenue and profits from other acquisitions.
- Business Type: Luxury car manufacturer
- Purchase price: not available
- Date of acquisition: 1965
- Annual revenue (2019): US$63.2 billion
- Annual profit (2019): US$4.5 billion
The luxury car manufacturer Audi has a complicated history that can be traced back to the late 19th century. In 1899, August Horch founded a car company in Germany. Ten years later, Horch founded a new car company called Audiwerke AG in Zwickau, which marked the origin of the Hyundai company name.In 1932, four independent German car manufacturers-Audi, DKW, Horch and Wanderer-were marked by the four rings in the company’s current logo and merged into Auto Union AG.Auto Union was subsequently acquired by Volkswagen from Daimler-Benz, and later merged with another company to form Audi.This acquisition is Volkswagen’s first acquisition, providing the company with an automobile manufacturer that has become one of the world’s top luxury brands.
- Business type: sports car manufacturer
- Purchase price: 5.8 billion U.S. dollars (49.9% equity); US$5.6 billion plus one common share of the public (50.1% of shares)
- Acquisition date: December 7, 2009 (holding 49.9% of shares); July 5, 2012 (50.1% equity announcement date)
- Annual sales revenue (2019): US$32.3 billion
- Annual profit (2019): US$3.3 billion
The Porsche sports car brand was born in 1948, when the first car with the name Porsche was born. Co-founder Ferdinand Porsche previously established an independent design and engineering company, initially responsible for the design of the Volkswagen Beetle. Porsche has become a high-end sports car brand, designing classic models such as 911, 964 Turbo and Carrera GT. This acquisition enriches Volkswagen’s product portfolio and makes it one of the world’s legendary sports car brands.
- Business type: budget car manufacturer
- Purchase price: 620 million German marks (initial holding 31%);Remaining share price: Not applicable
- Acquisition date: 1991 (initial holding 31%); May 30, 2000 (remaining shares)
- Annual sales revenue (2018): USD 17.8 billion (as of June 9, 2020, CZK/USD = 0.0427)
- Annual profit (2018): USD 1.2 billion (as of June 9, 2020 CZK/USD = 0.0427)
Skoda is one of the oldest car manufacturers in the world. Its origins were a bicycle factory established in Boleslav, Czech Republic in 1895. Ten years later, the factory began to produce a new type of transportation called a car. The company was later taken over by the engineering and manufacturing company Škoda Pilsen in 1925. After the Sovietization of Czechoslovakia after World War II, the company was placed under state control and produced cheap cars. It was not until the collapse of the communist group in 1989 that Skoda was gradually privatized.Volkswagen acquired the initial 31% of the company in 1991 and became the sole owner of Skoda in May 2000.The acquisition adds a budget brand to Volkswagen’s lineup.
- Business Type: Commercial Vehicle Manufacturer
- Purchase price: 1.6 billion US dollars (initial 18.7% equity and 34% voting rights);Approximately USD 9.6 billion (remaining shares)
- Date of acquisition: March 27, 2000;May 13, 2014 (Remaining shares)
- Annual sales (2019): USD 16.7 billion (Swedish Krona/USD = 0.1080 as of June 9, 2020)
- Annual profit (2019): USD 1.3 billion (Swedish Krona/USD as of June 9, 2020 = 0.1080)
Scania was founded in Sweden in 1891 and was one of the first companies in the world to start manufacturing commercial vehicles.Since then, it has become one of the world’s leading manufacturers of heavy trucks and buses. Volkswagen acquired Scania’s initial shares in 2000 and gradually increased its ownership through subsequent share purchases. By 2014, Volkswagen had acquired a 90% stake in Scania.The acquisition of Scania, a commercial vehicle manufacturer, has greatly enriched Volkswagen’s sales base in the global automotive market.
- Business type: luxury sports car manufacturer
- Purchase price: 111 million US dollars (estimated)
- Acquisition date: 1998
Volkswagen acquired a large-scale sports car company in 1998, first acquiring Lamborghini. In that year, it also paid US$790 million for Bentley and an estimated US$50 million for Bugatti. All three cars have been acquired because the automaker is aggressively entering the luxury and high-end sports car market.
Volkswagen Diversity and Inclusive Transparency
As part of our efforts to raise awareness of the importance of company diversity, we emphasized the transparency of Volkswagen’s commitment to diversity, inclusion, and social responsibility. The figure below illustrates how Volkswagen reports on the diversity of its management and workforce. This shows whether Volkswagen disclosed data on the diversity of its board of directors, top management, general management and all employees in various indicators. We have used ✔ for transparency.
|Volkswagen Diversity and Inclusion Report|
|Race||gender||ability||Veteran status||Sexual orientation|
|Board of Directors|