Volkswagen to purchase stake in major Springfield employer Navistar

Navistar has formed an alliance with Volkswagen Truck and Bus in which the German automaker will invest about $256 million in Navistar in a deal that includes agreements to share technology and resources.

Navistar is a major Springfield employer with about 1,500 current workers and thousands of retirees in the area.

Navistar officials declined to comment earlier this year on reports the company could be sold, but did say they were looking at more partnerships.

>>RELATED: Navistar, major Springfield employer, could be sold, experts say

The deal announced this morning strengthens Illinois-based Navistar’s financial position, while giving the German firm a foothold in the U.S. truck market. Volkswagen is taking a roughly 17-percent stake in Navistar, and will receive the right to appoint two directors to Navistar’s board of directors.

>>DETAILS: Navistar to add 300 jobs in Springfield with second GM deal

It isn’t clear what impact the deal may have on the Springfield plant.

>>MORE COVERAGE: Navistar reports $33M loss in first quarter

“Starting in the near term, this alliance will benefit our purchasing operations through global scope and scale,” said Troy Clarke, president and CEO of Navistar in a press release. “Over the longer term, it it intended to expand the technology options we are able to offer our customers by leveraging the best of both companies and enabling Navistar to deliver enhanced uptime.”

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