Audi may make a move for Italian motorcycle maker Ducati next week according to a report from Reuters. The German automaker’s acquisition of Ducati is reportedly underway, with the company unable to find any “major stumbling blocks” to prevent a deal from going through.
Reports claim that Audi’s purchase of Ducati could take place as soon as April 18, a day before VW’s annual shareholder’s meeting in Hamburg, Germany.
According to an unnamed source Ducati’s largest shareholder, Investindustrial, has agreed not to discuss a potential sale of the company to anyone but Audi.
Talk of a potential acquisition for the Italian motorcycle maker could not come at a better time — and will likely be dealt with soon — as Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera reports that Audi’s exclusive bargaining rights with Investindustrial end on April 15. At that point, the majority shareholder will be free to negotiate with other interested parties.
Interestingly, this isn’t the first time Audi has tried to purchase Ducati. The Italian paper also noted the company’s failed attempt back in 2005 to buy Ducati from former owner Texas Pacific Group, but was ultimately outdone by Investindustrial.
Should Audi succeed in purchasing Ducati, the luxury German automaker would undeniably gain a massive boost, and allow the company to compete even further with long-standing rival BMW in the superbike market.
Audi — who have also owned famed Italian car manufacturer Lamborghini since 1998 — will undoubtedly use the acquisition of Ducati to further its expertise in high-revving light engines, and continue research and development into more fuel efficient technologies.
For now, there are no details regarding just how much purchasing Ducati would cost Audi (according to Reuters, sources declined to comment), but reports suggest a figure in the ballpark of $1.1 billion.