Ssangyong appears to be having a very difficult 2020.
While the effects of COVID-19 have played a big part in the company’s recent downward slump, sales did not bounce back even after all the efforts to curb the pandemic's effects. In fact, Ssangyong is down 30% in its home market. The company only sold around 24,000 units as compared to Hyundai and Kia, which sold 66,000 and 51,000 cars, respectively, in the same period.
To make matters worse, Mahindra, the current owners of Ssangyong, rejected the company’s request for a fresh injection of funds amounting to KRW 500 billion last April. Now, the South Korean marque might need to look for a new buyer as the Indian conglomerate could be letting go of its majority stake in the company.
According to a report by Reuters, Ssangyong recently hired an advisor that will help the company look for a new investor. Currently, the Indian conglomerate Mahindra owns 74.65 percent of Ssangyong. However, they might soon be letting go of its majority share which is currently valued at KRW 332 billion (approx. USD 274.59 million or Php 13.77 billion).
At first, Chinese automakers Geely and BYD were cited to be interested in Ssangyong. However, representatives from both automakers have said that they will not participate in any bidding for the South Korean automaker should Mahindra let go of its majority stake.
For now, it is uncertain what will happen to Ssangyong as Mahindra has yet to let go of its ownership stake. If that does happen, the big question is who will be picking up ownership of Ssangyong.