Volkswagen AG is considering selling its Italian motorcycle brand Ducati as part of an asset review that started a year ago to examine options for non-core operations, according to people familiar with the matter.
VW said last June it would review its portfolio of assets and brands, rekindling speculation among analysts that "non-core" businesses such as Ducati or a diesel-engine business for machinery could be up put for sale.
Reuter's unnamed sources say that VW has asked the investment bank Evercore to evaluate options for streamlining its finances - which includes the sale of Ducati, which it bought in 2012 for a reported €860 million.
The motorcycle maker may attract peers in China, India's Hero or investors such as the consortium that purchased British sports auto maker Aston Martin in 2007, the sources stated.
Ducati is still enjoying plenty of success as one source said the company makes about €100 ($109) million annually before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization.
While the VW Group refused to comment on the situation, and the same response came from Evercore's representatives, it is clear that an internal evaluation of "non-core" operations could be targeting Ducati. Harley Davidson, Suzuki, Honda and Kawasaki could also be interested. In 2016, Ducati posted sales of 593 million Euros in 2016 (over Rs 4,000 crore), selling over 55,000 motorcycles worldwide. It seemed to boil down to the passion for Ducati of former VW Chairman, Ferdinand Piech. They added that if the idea of a sale doesn't attract sufficient interest, the automaker may also look at a stock market flotation option for Ducati.