Fresh from celebrating the 50th anniversary of the family ‘s critical investment into Bayerische Motoren Werke the Quandt family has renewed it ‘s commitment to the company. Bloomberg has a report out this week details some of the strategy and challenges the car maker will be facing. Here ‘s an excerpt:
“We as a family are looking forward” to shaping the future with BMW, Stefan Quandt said at a Munich event today to mark the 50th anniversary of the shareholders’ vote approving the German family’s rescue of the luxury-car maker. “Lead, don’t follow – that’s the entrepreneurial calling of BMW.”
“Volkswagen will at some point have benchmark costs and BMW has to ask itself whether it can face this challenge on its own,” said Stefan Bratzel, director of the Center of Automotive Management in Bergisch Gladbach, Germany. “BMW will have to consider whether it will accept cross shareholdings to secure long-term strategic partnerships.”
There are “parallels” between the crisis the company faced 50 years ago and the recent recession, Reithofer said earlier this month. In both cases, BMW invested in new products.
“Securing the survival and successful development of BMW is a commitment” stemming from Quandt’s rescue, Reithofer said today. “That means recognizing chances and taking them.”
The focus in the 1960s was the BMW 1500, which closed the gap between the entry-level BMW 700 and the high-end 501, the so-called Baroque Angel.
Last year, in the midst of the recession, BMW introduced the X1 compact sport-utility vehicle and 5-Series GT, which combines elements of an SUV and sedan. In 2010, BMW rolled out a revamped 5-Series and the new Mini Countryman, the brand’s first model with four doors.
“In cyclical industries like automaking, it is extremely important for management to remain true to its strategy, and that works better with a stable major shareholder,” said Juergen Meyer, a fund manager with SEB Asset Management in Frankfurt, whose largest holding is BMW stock. “The Quandts have been an asset to BMW in this regard.”
It ‘s one of the better pieces in relating the challenging position BMW faces itself with. They have the brand, the products and in many cases the right people to lead the company. But the reality of mergers and massive buying power of companies like VW mean that many the future still has a lot of uncertainty to it for BMW.