German sports car maker Porsche has effectively won control of Volkswagen, Europe’s biggest auto maker.
Porsche issued a statement that it has boosted its stake from 31% to over 35%, a controlling interest under German law.
And it says it wants this to increase to more than 50% by the end of the year.
This comes amid rising tension on many fronts.
VW Chairman Ferdinand Piech is Wolfgang Porsche’s cousin, but he has effectively voted against his family.
There is conflict between the two works councils. VW fears Porsche will push through aggressive efficiency moves and reject demands for a pay rise.
The German government is trying to modify a law giving the state government of Lower Saxony veto power over the fate of the company.
Porsche wants the law abolished so it can more easily seize control.
Despite the conflict, Volkswagen shares were up more than 2.8% in afternoon trading, even as Germany’s DAX was down, and the European Central Bank pumped more than 70 billion euros into money markets to help them stabilise after the Lehman Brothers’ collapse.