FRANKFURT (Reuters) -- German automakers Porsche Automobil Holding SE and Volkswagen AG might merge in 2010 instead of 2011 as currently planned, German newspaper Die Welt reported, citing VW's chief financial officer.
In a "very optimistic scenario" and if the economy and financial markets offer particularly favorable conditions, both companies might be able to accelerate the merger, VW CFO Hans Dieter Poetsch told the newspaper's Monday edition.
Christian Wulff, premier of the German state of Lower Saxony, which holds a blocking minority stake in VW, backs an earlier-than-planned merger of the carmakers, he said on Monday.
Poetsch said that Porsche will deliver "very impressive" results for its operating business for the 2009 financial year and the combined group might beat its target and become world market leader before 2018.
VW CEO Martin Winterkorn wants the German giant to become the world's biggest automaker by unit sales by 2018.
Poetsch said the merged entity will seek cost synergies through joint purchase and logistics, closer cooperation in financial services, joint development projects and the use of similar modules in both groups, Die Welt reported.
While these cost synergies will be achieved "swiftly," revenue synergies will take some three years to achieve, Poetsch said, according to the report.
Volkswagen considers itself and Porsche as "partners," Poetsch said.