PSA CEO Says Merger Won’t Result In Any Brands Being Let Go

According to PSA CEO Carlos Tavares, the PSA-FCA merger will not result in any brands being let go on either side, he said during a recent interview on a French radio station.

Yet, some people have questioned whether the two companies actually need all those brands, especially since some of FCA’s brands may require heavy investment, and/or could end up competing against PSA’s for sales, as reported by Autonews Europe.

“It is part of the challenge to properly manage these brands to cover the market,” stated Tavares on the BFM Business radio station. “I see that all these brands, without exception, have one thing in common: they have a fabulous history,” he added.

“We love the history of car brands, it gives us a foundation on which we can project ourselves into the future. So today, I don’t see any need, if this deal is concluded, to remove brands because they all have their history and they all have their strengths.”

Also read: FCA And PSA Agree To Merge, Create The World’s Fourth Largest OEM

He went on to say that the merged group “would indeed have a significant number of brands,” but that the number would still be lower than what the Volkswagen Group has.

Tavares added that both companies will target productivity improvements over time and that they are both willing to make any concessions in order to get a green light from the European Union.

“Give all the necessary regulatory approvals that need to be granted, such a deal cannot be closed in less than a year,” said Tavares, while adding that a “binding deal” should be sealed in the coming weeks.

  • WalthamDan

    Typical speak from all acquiring CEOs. Let’s see how things stand 12 mos after .

    • charlotteharry57

      I agree 100%. Sounds ridiculous, but the Germans have too many brands and they don’t seem to be cutting any. Which baffles me as well.

    • Stephen G

      Tavares’ comment is probably true for the moment but can’t possibly hold true in the future. Especially between the overlap of product in Europe and eastern markets. Also, knowing there is a wake of automakers that were were lost to history and the abundance of new automakers getting into the e-car business seems to make his comment even more short sighted.

  • RobPul

    Good, given that all their brands either sell well already with clear identity, good products and complementary strengths (Peugeot, Citroen, Opel/Vauxhall, Jeep, RAM, Fiat in LatAm) or could sell well with the right positioning and investments (Alfa, Maserati, Lancia and Fiat Europe).

    The only real brand overlap would be in Europe when Fiat re-enters segments where Citroen and Opel/Vauxhall are, given similar positioning. They’d had to reinvent Fiat’s image, moving away from current “split personality” sub-brands of cheap/basic/practical Panda and more refined/fashion-conscious 500.

    • charlotteharry57

      Chrysler and Dodge are relatively insignificant in the US. The real moneymakers are Jeep and RAM.

  • FCA is a mess, with Lancia being thrown in the gutter because of Alfa Romeo and Alfa Romeo plans being changed on a daily basis (for not working out as planned, I guess), Dodge having a lineup of cars on 10+ year old platforms and Chrysler being an even bigger joke… Jeep and RAM are pretty much pulling the weight.

    On the other side, PSA does not have any surplus brands, but all of them are overlapping in the segment from which FCA is absent, so this whole thing could go really good (as PSA was having it for the last couple of years) or really bad (the FCA way).

  • charlotteharry57

    An offshoot of this proposed merger that no one seems to be discussing is that it will make matters at Renault/Nissan/Mitsubishi even more strained. Renault and PSA are fierce competitors, Nissan vows to start shrinking and Mitsu has basically no desirable product to offer. Maybe THEY will NEED a merger partner.

  • A Brown

    In Europe, brand line up vs VW Group should be Maserati = Porsche, Alfa (Sport) & DS (Luxury) = Audi + CUPRA, Peugeot = VW, Opel/Vauxhall = Skoda, Citroen = Seat (both cheaper with youth appeal), FIAT = Jetta (chinese only brand I know) – similar position to Dacia. PFCA will have Jeep on top but that’s fine. Only brand they should chop is Lancia but they could just keep this as a rebadged DS in the same way Opel/Vauxhall are rebadged for different home markets.

    • RobPul

      DS is a brand with no history that sells mostly in France, with total volumes that are similar to what Lancia sells in Italy and half of what Alfa sells globally.

      With proper investments, Alfa and, potentially in the longer term, Lancia, have much more potential than DS to compete in terms of image and therefore products against Audi, BMW and Mercedes.

      I’d actually say that with proper investments and products on Alfa globally, DS would become for France what Lancia is for Italy, a local semi-premium brand. And if they decided to invest and develop another premium Europe-wide brand below Maserati and in addition to Alfa, I’d bet on Lancia rather than DS.

      • A Brown

        I was in two minds about DS. I think DS/Lancia should be like Opel/Vauxhall for different markets.

  • designer_dick

    Tavares clearly knows what he’s doing, given that he first managed to turn PSA’s fortunes around from a €5bn loss to one of the healthiest profit margins in the industry, then repeated his success with Opel-Vauxhall, returning those two brands to profit after almost 20 years of continued losses under General Motors.

    I wouldn’t bet against him having a similarly winning formula for FCA and its multitude of brands. I suspect he’ll decide to leverage PSA’s expertise with small-midsize FWD cars across the enlarged group, while retaining Fiat’s Panda/500 platform, and FCA’s experience in RWD and AWD. I think they’ll end up with the passenger car divisions focused around the Fiat 500/Panda, CMP, EMP2 and Giorgio platforms.

    If the company is profitable, it can operate as many brands as it likes.

  • Perry F. Bruns

    My guess is that they’ll keep ownership of the brands and find or maintain niches for each one, as they’ve done by maintaining Opel and Vauxhall in their respective markets.

    So Fiat could become Italy’s Vauxhall and Lancia and Alfa Romeo could be Italy’s DS.

  • Craig

    Well that’s certainly hopeful!

  • Nihar

    The brands need to be positioned in a way that hits different levels.

    Dodge & Fiat- Like what VW is doing with Skoda. Budget, but up the quality/reliablity. (One with American design, the other with Italian design)

    Chrysler & Citroen- Move upmarket. (Luxury oriented brands) Citroen could be the sportier of the two. Chrysler makes me think “Poor man’s Rolls Royce”. Chrysler needs to break new levels of luxury, like Lexus or Genesis.

    Peugeot & Alfa Romeo- Sports oriented brands. Performance, and quality.

    Opel- Tesla competitor.

    Lancia- Fleet vehicles.

    Jeep & Ram- Offroad and work trucks.

    (At least this is what I would do)

    • Craig

      Good thinking I say.

    • Frase

      I think Opel/Vauxhall will likely be more the Skoda type brand, while Fiat plays it as something more image and fashion conscious. And besides, isn’t the next 500 going to be electric only anyway?

    • paulgdeaton

      Until recently, Lancia was the Italian innovator (think: V4’s, V6’s, and forward-thinking designs); unfortunately, it is being starved of products by FCA, which seems to have taken a schizophrenic attitude towards all its brands.

      Lancia should be revived by becoming the electric-car leader, and bring that forward-thinking innovation to the group. That would give PSA-FCA an ideal competitor to Tesla, et al, and restore Lancia’s historic role – and, I believe, its fortunes.

      • XtremWize

        Lancia sells more cars with a single model for Italy only than the entire range of Alfa Romeo throughout Europe.

    • KareKakk

      Maybe the Imperial brand should be revived for the luxury segment instead of Chrysler? Wuth Lancia as the european luxury sister?

      • Nihar

        The Imperial should be the 300’s replacement, and be made a serious S class competitor. The reason the Lincoln Continental is being discontinued (hopefully replaced) was because they didn’t differentiate it enough from the China Taurus.

    • Thetruthísntalwayspopular

      Lanci fleet vehicles but Peugeot the sports brand? Eh?

  • McFly

    It’s not the “fabulous history” of a brand that makes it successful, but the ability to constantly deliver on what the brand promises. Good example: Saab. They had a fabulous history that they couldn’t live up to.

    • Giannis Antypas

      +1

    • RobPul

      With equal investments and efforts, brands with history can achieve more than brands that have none, simply because (good) history strengthen brand image particularly in premium segments.

      • McFly

        The important word here is “good”. Some of these brands indeed have a long history, but also a recent history that isn’t at all impressive.

        The value of a product brand needs to be constantly refilled, or it will decrease.

    • DudeLicious

      that wasn’t SAAB’s fault, but GM’s “excellent” work in KILLING IT.

      • McFly

        Saab killed Saab. They didn’t make any money under Scania ownership either, and after the old 900 they never managed to produce a car that lived up to the brand instead of just exploiting it.

  • dufonrafal .

    Looking at car brands:

    Europe PSA+FCA = 8 brands (4 mainstream, 3 premium, 1 luxury)

    Peugeot
    Citroën
    DS
    Opel/Vauxhall
    Fiat
    Jeep
    Alfa Romeo
    Maserati

    Europe VAG = 9 brands (3 mainstream, 3 premium, 3 luxury)

    Volkswagen
    Seat
    Skoda
    Cupra
    Audi
    Porsche
    Lamborghini
    Bentley
    Bugatti

    So more brands for VAG, but less mainstream ones.

    USA PSA-FCA = 5 brands

    Dodge/RAM
    Chrysler
    Jeep
    Fiat (not for long I believe)
    Alfa-Romeo
    Maserati
    (Peugeot soon?)

    VAG = 6 brands
    Volkswagen
    Audi
    Porsche
    Lamborghini
    Bugatti
    Bentley

    So VAG has less mainstream brands and more luxurious ones. Which are easier to differentiate.

    • javier navarro

      I would make peugeot a captive import for the Chrysler brand. makes no sense to relaunch it in the USA. Look at the poor attempt with Fiat and Alpha

      • dufonrafal .

        For the NA market I was thinking:

        Continue to improve Jeep

        Expand the Dodge/RAM range (more mainstream cars & crossovers and continue with the muscle cars, maybe some better ProMaster based on PSA Van’s)

        Have Chrysler be a true American premium brand with new models.

        Continue the work on Alfa Romeo and Maserati.

        Fiat should only have a few models like the Spyder sold by Alfa.

        Same for Peugeot but by Dodge and with models like the 508 PSE.

        • DudeLicious

          hey dude. I love how you americans love to trash Fiat. did you know those “PSA Van’s” you think are so much “better” than the current ProMaster are actually a FCA-PSA joint venture ALREADY? the ProMaster you love to trash IS ALREADY a Peugeot/Citroen. Sheesh.

          • dufonrafal .

            Only the Fiat Ducati/RAM ProMaster is a FCA-PSA collaboration. The Van is a Fiat also sold by PSA.

            The Fiat Doblo/RAM ProMaster City is FCA only.

            While PSA has their own Vans also sold by Totyota:

            Citroën Jumpy/Dispatch
            Peugeot Expert
            Toyota ProAce
            Opel/Vauxhall Vivaro

            And

            Peugeot Partner
            Citroën Berlingo
            Opel/Vauxhall Combo
            Toyota ProAce City

            And I’m not American, and I don’t trash Fiat, I actually like Fiat. But the ProMaster City is older than what PSA offers. I didn’t say it was bad…

  • Androuffle

    I’m just curious about what they’ll do with Lancia…

    • Matteo Tommasi

      Lancia is already dead

      • Androuffle

        Not yet, still selling the Ypsilon for the Italian domestic market. Almost dead 😉

        • Ivan Delev

          And selling more Ypsilons in Italy than Alfa in all of Europe

  • Mr. EP9

    I don’t believe them for a second.

  • Gerald Michael

    A brand’s “fabulous history” means nothing if its present is stagnating.

  • William rowe

    My take away, keep all brands but dont sale the same brands in the same country.. maybe all the brands will just be clones with different final looks for each country taste

    • javier navarro

      I am okay with badge engineering. As long as the PSA guy is in charge. The FCA guy’s don’t know what they are doing

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