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KTM takes stake in MV Agusta

KTM of Austria has bought a 25.1% stake in MV Agusta, which is currently owned by Luxembourg-based ComSar Invest, headed by Russian entrepreneur Timur Saradarov. And there are indications that the Austrians may eventually swallow MV entirely. The new set up will see KTM help MV with its supply chain and purchasing, while also distributing MVs in certain markets.

The two companies already have links on distribution, since last September when KTM AG took on distribution of MV Agustas in the USA, Canada and Mexico. This allows for MVs to be sold through some KTM dealers, which should expand MV Agusta’s presence in North America. MV should also benefit from KTM’s help in getting hold of materials and parts, something which is becoming more of a challenge to all motorcycle makers in the economic turbulence caused in part by Putin’s war in Ukraine and the aftermath of Covid.

So what’s in it for KTM? MV Agusta is very strong in the sports bike market, where KTM does very little, and the deal could give the Austrians access to MV’s proven range of three and four-cylinder engines, with great potential to broaden the company’s range of bikes. And just as MVs will be sold through KTM dealers (an arrangement which could spread to this side of the Atlantic), the reverse could also be arranged, with existing MV dealers taking on KTM machines as well.

KTM already owns GasGas and Husqvarna, so could it be looking at adding MV Agusta to its stable too? According to Italian bike magazine Moticiclismo, ‘reliable sources’ say that KTM is undertaking due diligence, with the intention of eventually buying the whole of MV Agusta.

Jim Freeman, Chair of the BMF, said, “MV, like other Italian marques, have a chequered ownership history, which has affected investment in the brand’s future. Being taken over by a major European manufacturer, with strong ties on the world stage, looks like it might be exactly what they’ve needed.”

Written by Peter Henshaw

Top image courtesy of Web Bikeworld