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GM agrees on compensation to Sberbank for failed Opel deal

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Sberbank and General Motors agreed on compensation, which the U.S. auto giant will pay for its refusal to sell the ailing German automaker Opel, despite earlier accords, Russia's largest retail bank said on Monday.

Sberbank and General Motors agreed on compensation, which the U.S. auto giant will pay for its refusal to sell the ailing German automaker Opel, despite earlier accords, Russia's largest retail bank said on Monday.

"The parties also express their readiness for potentially mutual advantageous cooperation in the future," Sberbank said in a statement but declined to give any details on the compensation deal.

In late December 2009, Sberbank demanded compensation from General Motors for the upset Opel deal, threatening to sue the U.S. automaker if the demand was not met.

"We have incurred significant costs. We have estimated all expenses and handed over a demand for voluntary compensation to the company," Sberbank CEO German Gref said, adding that "we will press for compensation using legal means if the demand is not met."

The U.S. auto giant decided in early November 2009 to retain its big European subsidiary Opel, citing "an improving business environment" in Europe.

On September 10, General Motors announced that it would sell Opel to a consortium of Canada's auto parts maker Magna and Russia's Sberbank. The decision was approved by the Opel board and the German government.

According to previous plans, the Magna-Sberbank consortium was expected to have a 55% stake in Opel on a parity basis, and the German carmaker was to control 10%, with GM retaining 35%.

The Sberbank CEO said some 9,000 pages of contract had been drawn up over 9 months of talks with General Motors, adding the U.S. automaker renounced the deal two days before its planned signing, without providing any "essential explanations."

MOSCOW, April 26 (RIA Novosti) 

 

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