From Automotive News
Tokyo -- The head of Faurecia SA said on Wednesday that bumper maker Plastal could be a good match for the French partsmaker, adding that his company was looking to be a consolidating force in the auto parts industry.
"It's been rumoured that we are interested in Plastal, and that's something that we consider but nothing has been decided yet," ceo Yann Delabriere told a small group of reporters in Tokyo.
"But Plastal fits well with the criteria (of our consolidation strategy)," he said, adding that the troubled company, whose clients include BMW AG and Volkswagen AG, had superior product quality and a strong customer portfolio.
An industry source told Reuters last week that carmakers had asked Faurecia and other potential bidders to look at taking on the German assets of Plastal, which filed for bankruptcy in March.
Delabriere repeated Faurecia's strategy of seeking non-cash deals to fund any acquisitions. He also said that issuing more new shares for acquisitions was not in the company's current plans.
Faurecia has been looking to boost its global presence by focusing on its four main business segments including seats and exhaust systems.
The company made headlines this month when it struck a deal to buy EMCON Technologies, a US company strong in the growing market for low-emission vehicles.
Faurecia has said it would fund the acquisition, due to be closed early next year, by issuing 20.9 million shares -- a move that would reduce automaker PSA/Peugeot Citroen SA's stake in Faurecia to 57.4 percent from 71 percent.
Delabriere, who is in Japan to promote Faurecia's products to Nissan Motor Co. and other car manufacturers, said the partsmaker was also in talks to partner with Chinese suppliers to boost Faurecia's sales in the fast-growing auto market.
"We are presently reviewing some possible partnership with local Chinese suppliers to extend our presence in China," he said, declining to elaborate.
China led a 30 percent jump in Faurecia's revenues in Asia in the third quarter, Delabriere said. He added that he expected Asian automakers, including South Korea's Hyundai Motor Co., to represent 10 percent of Faurecia's global revenues soon, up from 6 percent now.
While ventures between foreign and local auto giants account for an overwhelming majority of Faurecia's sales in China at the moment, Delabriere said he was pushing to develop components for own-brand cars for FAW Group Corp., SAIC Motor Corp. and Dongfeng Motor.
Faurecia last month raised its second-half sales forecasts despite a 21 percent drop in third-quarter sales.
The French company ranks No. 8 on the Automotive News list of the top 100 global suppliers, with sales to automakers of about $17660 million in 2008.