(ANSA) - Rome, September 24 - Chrysler Group is being forced
to go ahead with an initial public offering (IPO) by its
second-biggest shareholder, which could threaten to end efforts
by main owner Fiat SpA to merge the two companies and form the
seventh-biggest automaker in the world.
According to a release Tuesday, the United Auto Workers
(UAW) VEBA healthcare fund, which owns the minority shares in
Chrysler, pushed to file IPO papers Monday, exercising a right
safeguarded in Chrysler's 2009 government-financed bankruptcy.
Fiat, which owns 58.5% of Chrysler, is aiming to buy up the
remaining shares but has so far balked at the UAW's $6 billion
Analysts view the IPO filing as a move by the UAW to raise
Chrysler's value and force a better offer from Fiat.
According to Chrysler's S-1 filing with the US Securities
and Exchange Commission, Fiat responded angrily, raising
questions as to whether a merger will be possible.
"Fiat has informed us that it is reconsidering the benefits
and costs of further expanding its relationship with us," said
Chrysler in its filing.