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May 31, 2011 10:50 AM, EDT

Volkswagen Again Boosts Stake in MAN

Eyes Merger Plan with Sweden’s Scania

German carmaker Volkswagen AG Tuesday formally launched a bid for MAN SE by boosting its stake in that company, a move that could create Europe’s largest truck maker, Reuters reported.

Volkswagen aims to boost its stake in MAN to 35% to 40%, from just over the 30% it currently controls of the German truck maker, Reuters said.

That would be enough to gain regulatory approval for closer cooperation between MAN and Sweden-based truck maker Scania AB without buying MAN outright, Reuters reported.

VW made a deliberately low offer of 95 euros (about $135) per share of MAN — about 1.8% below its current market value, Reuters said.

Eventually, VW would like to have a combined trucks group that could save about 400 million euros ($575 million) in costs per year, mainly by bundling procurement, Reuters reported.