News has just come in that billionaire businessman Li Shufu who became the largest single shareholder at Mercedes-Benz through the acquisition of almost 10% of Daimler’s shares, was apparently also in talks with the BMW Group. There were also talks between BMW and the Geely founder before he made the Daimler purchase. Li is said to have promised BMW improved access to the Chinese market, including through his contacts with the Chinese government.
In return, Li Shufu did not want a stock package, but a cooperation in the construction of electric cars. However, the BMW Group had decided to go down a different path and recently announced a cooperation between MINI and Great Wall in order to build the electric car MINI E in China.
At the same time, Li Shufu is aiming to make Geely one of the world’s leading carmakers. The partnership with Mercedes-Benz, which has been forced by Daimler’s surprise purchase of shares to some extent, could be one of the keys to the further rise of the Chinese over the next few years.
The BMW Group does not seem to be the least be worried as the Quandt and Klatten families hold the majority of the shares in BMW and will probably stay the brand owners.