Daimler’s CEO Dieter Zetsche admitted that they are in talks with Geely over the expansion of their cooperation despite German authorities drawing up measures to protect the nation’s industry from foreign rivals.
Last October, Daimler said that they were setting up a ride-hailing venture with Geely in China, following Geely’s acquisition of a 9.69 percent stake in the German automaker and their goal to form an alliance.
However, Zetsche didn’t further elaborate about the discussions between the two companies. However, he did concede that “we are in talks about other topics which have a bigger dimension”, according to Reuters.
The German government commentedthat they could buy stakes in domestic companies as a way to protect them from hostile or unwanted foreign takeovers, expressing a shift in their industrial strategy.
During the company’s annual press conference, however, Daimler’s boss said that “countries that pursue industrial policies tend not to be competitive, we did not ask for these measures”,.
Back in February 2018, Geely’s founder Li Shufu acquired a 9.69 percent stake in Daimler, spending around $9 billion at the time and becoming its biggest shareholder. Since then, Daimler has been in talks with Geely, but so far the only solid collaboration between the two companies is the aforementioned ride-hailing joint venture.