Just as global carmakers have bundled together in multiple-billion dollars acquisitions, their Tier One suppliers seem to follow suite and signal the era of auto parts mega conglomerates.
Not long ago we heard of ZF Friedrichshafen’s acquisitions of rival company TRW Automotive, forming the second largest auto parts maker in the world and now we are hearing that Hankook Tire is considering whether to partner with a private equity firm to buy a stake in Halla Visteon Climate Control Corp. Following the announcement, the South Korea’s largest tiremaker saw its shares surging to the highest level in six weeks. The company revealed in a statement it was discussing with Hahn & Co. about jointly buying Visteon Corp.’s 70% holding in Halla Climate. The Korea Economic Daily also earlier today reported that the Seoul-based company vied for preferred purchasing rights if and when Hahn would sell the portion it acquired.
According to Shin Chung Kwan, an analyst at KB Investment & Securities Co., the new deal would be a “win-win” scenario for both companies, with the tiremaker rendering credit to Halla Climate’s future after it was acquired by an investment firm. The purchase would also provide the opportunity for Halla, which produces automotive air-control parts to use Hankook’s global ties, while the latter expands its business towards car heaters and air conditioners.