Jaguar Land Rover bailout talks with government crumble as outgoing boss Sir Ralf Speth’s pay tops £4.4m

Time 1 year ago

Jaguar Land Rover has ended talks with the government over bail-out cash as it’s revealed outgoing chief executive Sir Ralf Speth’s pay packet has risen to £4.4m.

In separate reports in the weekend’s papers, the car manufacturer is revealed to have ceased talks with the government as it looks to private funding to shore up its business.

The Financial Times reports that bailout cash for Jaguar Land Rover, which would have seen the government take a stake in the business – just like it did with the banks in the 2008 financial crash – has been turned down.

The paper reports that both JLR and parent company Tata, which needed cash for its Port Talbot Tata Steel plant too, was ended when the Treasury deemed the wider business to have enough cash to fund the firms rather than the tax payer.

The FT reports that an insider at JLR said the company had also been worried about demands to accelerate its electric vehicle programme and phase out diesel cars faster – engines that make up the large majority of its output, especially in its most profitable models, like the Range Rover.

While the government has refused to comment, it is believed JLR is still in talks over other options for relief, including tax breaks.

JLR employs around 30,000 in the UK – almost all of whom were placed on the government’s furlough scheme – and it lost nearly £1bn in the first half of the year.

Pay packet

The failed bailout news comes as The Times reports boss Sir Ralf’s pay topped £4.4m in the same year the company made 4,000 staff redundant.

Despite the heavy losses, the outgoing boss – who will be replaced in October by former Renault exec Thierry Bollore – saw his pay packet increase 30 per cent with salary, bonus and share awards topping £18m for the last four years.

Sir Ralf – who was knighted last year for services to the industry – is leaving JLR after a decade with the business, which he joined from BMW. 

Earlier this month, Jaguar Land Rover lost an appeal over its bid to register the shapes of versions of the Land Rover Defender.

It had lodged a High Court appeal after making unsuccessful trademark applications to the UK Intellectual Property Office for the shapes of the Defender 90 and Defender 110.

Ineos Industries Holdings, which is producing the Grenadier 4×4, had opposed JLR’s trademark applications, and a UK Intellectual Property Office official ruled last October that the shapes lacked ‘distinctiveness’.

James Baggott's avatar

James is the founder and editor-in-chief of Car Dealer Magazine, and CEO of parent company Baize Group. James has been a motoring journalist for more than 20 years writing about cars and the car industry.

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