On this day in 2006, Ford named Tata Motors, a part of conglomerate Tata Group, as the preferred bidder to purchase Jaguar and Land Rover from Ford Motor Company. The deal closed the following June to the tune of $2.3 billion. This was about half of what Ford purchased them in 2000. Under the terms of the deal, Ford also had to return Tata up to $600 million following the sale to make up for any shortfalls in the two brands’ pension plans. Ford offloaded the brands during a major company overhaul following a two year loss of $15 billion.
At the time of the purchase, Tata Group focused on overseas acquisitions of everything from coffee companies to manufacturing businesses. Tata had no intention of making any major changes to either Land Rover or Jaguar, nor would it affect the jobs of the 16,000 people employed by the automakers. Jaguar Land Rover Limited, was established as a holding company to ease the acquisition. Today, the company remains a subsidiary of Tata.