MAHLE, HELLA Sell BHTC Shares to AUO Corp.

MAHLE, HELLA Sell BHTC Shares to AUO Corp.

Greater growth opportunities are anticipated for BHTC under the new ownership structure.

Automotive suppliers MAHLE and HELLA announced on Oct. 2, 2023, they are selling their respective 50 percent stake in the Behr-Hella Thermocontrol (BHTC) joint venture to AUO Corporation, a Taiwanese-based company that specializes in display panel products and solutions. BHTC is headquartered in Lippstadt, Germany.

The total purchase price is based on an enterprise value of € 600 million, according to MAHLE, and the transaction is currently still subject to approval by the relevant foreign trade and antitrust authorities. Closing is expected to take place by mid-2024, the companies say.

The agreed sale of shares is the result of discussions between MAHLE and HELLA regarding the future positioning and direction of BHTC. “These talks were initiated against the backdrop of a change of control clause in the joint venture agreement after the technology company Faurecia acquired a majority stake in HELLA,” the companies add.

“Since its foundation almost 25 years ago, BHTC has established itself as a strong automotive supplier with an excellent technology portfolio and a high customer reputation. We are therefore pleased to have found a strategic buyer in AUO who can further develop BHTC’s business in a competitive and continuously growing environment and seize new market opportunities,” said Arnd Franz, chairman of the MAHLE Management Board and CEO. “We are focusing on further accelerating our transformation with a consistent focus on electrification, thermal management, and components for sustainable green combustion engines as part of our MAHLE 2030+ strategy.”

“BHTC is a well-positioned, future-oriented company. However, after consideration of all the framework conditions, we have jointly reached the conclusion that BHTC has greater growth opportunities under a new owner than in the current shareholder structures,” says HELLA CEO Michel Favre. “With our divestment from the joint venture, we are also continuing our established portfolio management. In this context, we are strengthening our focus and resource allocation on our core business groups Lighting, Electronics, and Lifecycle Solutions.”

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