Ferdinand Porsche opens a design office, the first stage of a company that will later become the sports car manufacturer of the same name.
Porsche, which designed the first VW Beetle, oversees the construction of Volkswagen’s first production hall.
The public company Volkswagen is privatized. The federal government and the Land of Lower Saxony, where the company originated, receive a 20% stake.
Ferdinand Porsche’s grandson, Ferdinand Piech, becomes CEO of Volkswagen, which means « the people’s car » in German. Its revolutionary « platform strategy », of using the same basic design for different models and adding bespoke components on top, has achieved economies of scale and has been credited with saving the company from possible bankruptcy.
Piech appoints Bernd Pischetsrieder as his successor as CEO and Piech becomes chairman of Volkswagen, a position he will hold until 2015.
September – Porsche announces plans to buy a 20% stake in VW, then ends up with a 10.3% voting stake.
November – Porsche’s Supervisory Board authorizes a stake increase to 29.9%, sparking speculation that it intends to gain majority control.
April – Porsche makes a mandatory takeover bid for Volkswagen after crossing the 30% threshold.
March – Porsche SE’s supervisory board gives the go-ahead to increase its stake in Volkswagen to more than 50%.
October – Porsche SE says it owns shares and options that give it control of 74% of Volkswagen’s votes and announces plans for a « domination » deal. A street on Volkswagen shares by overheard sellers of the announcement briefly makes VW the world’s most valuable company.
January – Porsche SE says it has raised its stake in VW’s votes to 50.8% and confirms its intention to raise its stake to 75% later if conditions allow.
May – Porsche SE drops Volkswagen takeover plan and says it will instead pursue a merger with Europe’s biggest automaker. Volkswagen chairman Mr Piech says Porsche needs to get its €9 billion debt under control before a deal can be struck.
July – Porsche SE chairman Wolfgang Porsche, a cousin of Piech, convenes an extraordinary meeting of the supervisory board for July 23 to discuss a possible sale of a stake in Porsche SE in Qatar for a value of more than 5 billion euros. A proposal from the Porsche board to prepare a capital increase of at least 5 billion euros (5 billion dollars) in cash and/or contribution in kind, is approved by the supervisory board, paving the way for a merger with Volkswagen. Porsche SE Wendelin Wiedeking retires.
December – Volkswagen says it has bought 49.9% of Porsche AG, the sports car business of Porsche SE, for 3.9 billion euros.
January – A group of investment funds sues Porsche SE and two of its former top executives, accusing them of fraud in a ‘short squeeze’ that caused the funds to lose more than $1 billion in the attempt takeover of Volkswagen AG by Porsche in 2008.
April – Elliott Associates, LP says the fraud and securities manipulation lawsuit against Porsche SE has gained momentum, it is seeking more than $2 billion in losses and 18 investment funds have joined the lawsuit pursuit.
October – Porsche SE car holding company says it may not be absorbed by Volkswagen by the end of 2011, as expected, due to some unresolved legal and tax issues related to the transaction, according to the CEO of both companies, Martin Winterkorn.
July – Volkswagen agrees to buy the remaining 50.1% stake in Porsche AG Porsche SE for approximately 4.5 billion euros.
Automaker Porsche AG is now wholly owned by Volkswagen AG, while Porsche SE, which is controlled by the Porsche and Piech families, is Volkswagen’s largest shareholder and holds the majority of voting rights.
February – Volkswagen and Porsche SE say they are considering a possible IPO of Porsche AG, under a proposed structure that would give Porsche SE a locking minority in the eponymous automaker.
September – Volkswagen announces its intention to float Porsche on the stock exchange at the end of September or the beginning of October. On September 29, the shares of Porsche AG begin trading on the Frankfurt stock exchange at 84 euros per unit, above the issue price of 82.5 euros.
($1 = 0.9984 euros)