Wednesday, May 19

MOTO MORINI OFFER REJECTED

PAULO Berlusconi, brother of Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlsconi, has had his offer to buy troubled Italian manufactuer Moto Morini turned down by trade union representives after a meeting on May 18.

It had earlier been reported that Paulo Berlusconi had offered 2.9 million euros to purchase the Moto Morini name, including the company's assets and rights past and future product lines, but news from Italy yesterday reports the Italian's proposed three-year business plan had been turned down with no agreement reached.

Berlusconi had earlier stated that if his offer was accepted, production would resume on 2010 models and that new models for 2011 would be on show at Milan in November.

Berlusconi owns Italian brand Garelli, which makes scooters, and he has also been suggested as a buyer of MV Agusta, which Harley-Davidson is trying to unload.

Moto Morini is nearing the end of its bankruptcy protection period and the only other offer for the brand is reportedly from a group of Canadian investors.
It is anticipated that Berlusconi may make another offer in the coming weeks, but right now the future of Moto Morini remains uncertain. There had also been reports that Moto Morini would supply engines to Bimota, but clearly that too is uncertain.

Despite this, there has been no interruption to the supply of spare parts or service to current owners of Moto Morini in New Zealand, reports New Zealand importer Don O'Connor of New Plymouth-based Eurobike Wholesale Ltd. There are currently three models available locally - the Corsaro Avio, Gran Passo, and 9.5. There is also a sale on run-out models, with 2008 models of the Corsaro Avio going for $16,995.00, 2009 Gran Passo (lowered seat) at $19,995 and 2007 9.5s going for just $14,995. For more information on these, contact Moto-Morini dealers: Haldane Motorcycles, Auckland; Shaw Motorcycles, Whangarei; Motomart, Wellington and AB's in Nelson