Porsche recently released on June 15th a 2 1/2 hour historical movie based on the Porsche archives’ 5,000 hours of film footage with a specially composed musical soundtrack . The company promises some never-before-released film clips. Racing drivers Hans Herrmann, Eberhard Mahle and Paul Ernst Strähle make appearances, as do Porsche historical figures including “Engine King” Hans Mezger and Heinz Rabe, described as the former director of Porsche social affairs.
It seems an interesting and calculated time to come out with such a film. It was only last week that the emirate of Qatar has agreed to invest $2.77 billion to save the company from mountains of debt. The debt that threatened insolvency only months ago. I can’t help but think the PR guys at Porsche said months before that, we need something to stir the souls of investors, ASAP. Too little too late perhaps as the Emir of Qatar will receive a 25% stake in common interest shares for his cash. This marks the first time the Porsche families have agreed to sell common shares with voting rights over preferred stock.
It is either that, or the indebted Porsche Automobile Holding which owns 50.8 percent of Volkswagen and 100 percent of the common shares of the Porsche corporation could sell to VW. Volkswagen could buy the holding’s subsidiary Porsche AG for €7 billion to €8 billion. Porsche would then be incorporated as the tenth brand in the VW group. The headquarters would remain in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen and Porsche would retain its own board of directors, just like Audi. Porsche Holding could erase nearly all of its debts in the process. This is the plan favored by Ferdinand Piëch but not by the relatives. Ah, dah.