Published on July 5th, 2015 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Italdesign Giugiaro now wholly owned by Audi
Around about 5 years ago, Italdesign Giugiaro sold 90.1% of their shares to Audi, under the Volkswagen Group. It was a move that reflected the economy at the time, and with a 9.9% share retention the Giugiaro family managed to retain a place on the board.
While selling a large portion of the company to a conglomerate must have been a difficult decision, it was important to continue growth; withe the resources and funding from Audi, the company has gained over 250 employees in the past 5 years.
Late last month, it was confirmed that Giugiaro has sold that final 9.9% share to Audi, as he wishes to leave the board and pursue his personal interests. It’s been a long run for him and he’s done a great number of things under the Giugiaro name, not least among which was the design of the original Volkswagen Golf that we know and love.
Giugiaro is getting on in his years, coming to 76 years old this year. Prior to the beginning of Italdesign in 1968, he worked at Fiat and Ghia, both of which are known for their intricate automotive designs. But what was important was that he gained the experience needed to develop a full product- not merely design-, and this would be a complete package that a manufacturer could (quite nearly) put straight into production.
Where the company will go from here is hard to say. There’s no doubt that the company will continue to grow under Audi’s supervision, but whether it will retain the kind of passion that can only be attributed to the Italians is yet to be seen. Audi’s new model lineup is still a little cookie-cutter in nature, which is bizarre considering that they have Giugiaro at their disposal.