Posted Apr 19th 2012 11:00AM
When Ford sold Jaguar and Land Rover to Tata Motors for US$2.5 billion, the auto industry was in rough shape. And it didn't help that the luxury combo pack didn't exactly have a lineup full of fresh rides.
Only four years have past since that historic sale, but the industry is in much better shape and new vehicles like the Land Rover Evoque and Jaguar XJ have seemingly done wonders for the luxury brands. In fact, Tata's investment may be in much better shape than most anyone would have thought. According to Bloomberg, analysts predict that an Initial Public Offering could show that the brands are worth a combined US$14 billion.
That's a monumental return on investment, and there are plenty of reasons for the lofty estimate. Tata reportedly earned US$2 billion off JLR in 2011, and sales are at all-time highs. The brands are also expecting major growth in China and Russia, and Tata has promised to double its investment in new products. Tata has also pledged 40 new or refreshed models in the next five years, which is likely more new metal than some full-line manufacturers would be willing to promise.
But while JLR is apparently worth an estimated US$14 billion, it appears that Tata isn't quite ready to issue an IPO. Company spokesman Debasis Ray told Bloomberg in an email that Tata is planning to fund the brands through internal cash accruals.