MUNICH -- General Motors Co. should close a deal to sell 55 percent of Opel to Magna International Inc. and its Russian partner Sberbank by Nov. 30, a senior executive said.
"I see no obstacles to getting the deal done successfully by the end of November," John Smith, GM's chief negotiator for the deal, said on a conference call with journalists Thursday.
Smith said GM will continue to cooperate closely with Magna on platforms, powertains, manufacturing and purchasing.
GM announced Thursday that it plans to sell a majority stake in Opel and its British sister brand Vauxhall to Canadian parts supplier Magna and Russian state lender Sberbank.
Under the proposal, Magna and Sberbank would each own 27.5 percent of the company, while Opel employees would hold 10 percent and GM the remaining 35 percent. Some 10,000 European jobs would be cut, a quarter of those in Germany.
The German government will provide $4.5 billion euros ($6.6 billion) in financing to carry the German-based automaker through a restructuring period in addition to the 1.5 billion euros it loaned Opel in May, Smith said. Other European governments with significant Opel operations will cover some of that amount, he said.
Magna and Sberbank will provide another $500 million equity investment, Smith said.
Smith said Magna aimed to make Opel profitable by 2011 and the carmaker should be able to repay the government loans used to back the deal by 2014 and begin paying dividends by 2015.