Porsche is set to sell part of its stake in Volkswagen to Qatar in a bid to secure its financial future, according to sources involved in the deal.
The Gulf state has said it plans to announce its decision on whether or not to take a stake in the debt ridden German manufacturer within the next fortnight.
But Qatar’s interest has reportedly now shifted to VW, as any deal involving Porsche would effectively mean Qatar was buying debt.
Porsche owns roughly a 50 per cent stake in VW, and had racked up a nine billion euro (£7.7 billion) debt trying to swallow up the much bigger firm. If Porsche gave up parts of its take in VW, this would ease its financial worries and clear the way for it to merge with VW.
Any Porsche sale of VW shares to Qatar would still leave Porsche as the firm’s majority stakeholder. The Lower Saxony government also owns a stake in VW and has the power to veto any decision. It is thought that Lower Saxony would be opposed to any deal with Qatar.