A German solar energy company has made a surprise bid to buy Opel from General Motors.
SolarWorld, which bought Shell’s solar fuels operation two years ago, yesterday offered GM €1bn (£844m) for Opel. The offer would include Opel’s four factory sites and its Russelsheim research and development base. It would not include any of Vauxhall’s assets or facilities.
Both GM and Opel rejected the offer, even though cash-strapped GM claims it will run out of money before Christmas, and Opel is lobbying the German government for a bail-out package.
The offer by SolarWorld has been widely derided as both impractical and implausible, and SolarWorld saw a sharp drop in its share price as a result of the announcement.
However, it does signal the decade-old alternative energy company’s ambitions for alternative fuels in the automotive sector.
The CEO of SolarWorld Frank Asbeck said: “Sustainability is a comprehensive concept. The challenges of climate protection and of the market can only be met if we move on from automotive to solar-motive concepts.”