Feri to expand factory in Maranello, sources say

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Feri to expand factory in Maranello, sources say

According to people familiar with the matter, Bloomberg NV plans to expand its factory in northern Italy as part of the electrification strategy it will unveil at a highly anticipated briefing next week.

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The supercar manufacturer has snapped up space near its Maranello plant and started clearing up the way for a third production line that will be dedicated to hybrid and electric vehicles, the people who asked not to be identified because the information is private, said the people who asked not to be identified. They said that the expansion will likely include a new battery research and development center.

Ferrari will present the project during its June 16 capital markets day, when Chief Executive Officer Benedetto Vigna is expected to shed light on Ferrari's EV strategy and lay out his business plan for the next four years. The former STMicroelectronics NV executive was brought in to accelerate the shift away from the 12 cylinder engines and four-figure horsepower the carmaker is known for.

A Ferrari spokesman didn't want to say anything. The US shares of the manufacturer rose as much as 1.3% as of 1: 15 p.m. Thursday in New York trading, reversing an earlier decline.

Ferrari has cultivated one of the world's most valuable brands long before it launched a smash success initial public offering in 2015. While the company continues to post enviable profit margins, its shares have recently been underperformed due to concerns about its late start in the EV race and how much playing catch-up will cost. The stock has dropped 22% this year in Milan, trailing Italy's benchmark stock index and European automotive peers.

Swetha Ramachandran, who manages GAM's Luxury Brand Equity Fund, said the company's strategy is to adapt to a changing world, as well as its strategy to pursue value over volume and what saturation.

After Vigna, 53, was appointed CEO, Ferrari shook up its organizational structure, bringing in several executives from his former employer, and partnering with chipmaker Qualcomm Inc. to work on more digital car cockpits. He was the head of the STMicro division that supplies sensors to Apple Inc.'s iPhone and automakers navigation systems.

Citi analysts say that they expect higher investment to drag on returns ahead of Ferrari launching its first purely electric vehicle in 2025. Redburn cautioned investors that they could be surprised by the amount of expense required.

Jefferies analysts wrote a May 30 note that Ferrari has looked a bit less exceptional in recent years, with returns coming from peaks and competitors raising their game. There is no IRS coming for your Venmo Income.

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