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11 September, 2006 - 17:38 By Staff Reporter

Aston Martin chief executive in takeover driving seat

The chief executive of Aston Martin looks to be in the driving seat to take over the company in a £1 billion buy-out.

Ulrich Bez is believed to be heading a consortium to take over the sports car manufacturer, which has a major factory presence in Newport Pagnell, MK.

The firm was put up for sale by Ford, which needs to free up more of its cash to fund North American expansion. An American consortium led by a ford executive is also being tipped to bid for the business.

Ford owns Aston Martin, Jaguar and Land Rover and the rationale appears to be that Aston Martin, as the smallest of the trio, is prime for separation from the group. The marque is extremely popular and Bez would inspire confidence among investors were he to take the wheel, given his track record in the boardroom.

He would only say that he expected to remain in a senior management role following any takeover and that sense of continuity would make him firm favourite to effect a buy-out.

Around 5,000 of the classic cars, renowned for their starring role in James Bond movies, are made each year.


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