Valeo accelerates overseas expansion
PARIS - Valeo SA will create a climate control supplier in Iran through a joint venture with an Iranian supplier. Valeo would own 34 percent of Iran Radiator but could increase its share to 51 percent.
Valeo plans to partner with Iran Kodro, Iran's largest automotive manufacturer.
The venture could achieve sales of about $60 million in three years for Valeo.
Valeo has also made its first industrial investment in South Africa by signing a joint venture agreement with automotive supplier Metair. Under the agreement, a new company, Valeo Systems South Africa, will be formed to produce front-end modules for Volkswagen. It will subsequently be expanded to include other Valeo products and systems. Valeo will be the majority shareholder in the company with a 51 percent stake. The joint venture is located in Uitenhage, near Port Elizabeth.
Timken refocuses European operations
CANTON, USA - Timken Co., the world's largest supplier of tapered roller bearings, said it would cut 600 jobs as part of its restructuring and take a $55 million pre-tax charge.
The supplier also plans to shift some manufacturing to eastern Europe from western Europe. The company said it will refocus its Duston, England, manufacturing plant to bearing production.
The company has cut 1,700 jobs as part of its restructuring over the past 18 months. About 50 percent of the company's $2.5 billion in sales last year were to the auto industry.
Dana buys into Slovakian supplier
TOLEDO, Ohio - Dana Corp. will acquire a majority stake in engine bearings maker Tribometal AS of Dolny Kubin, Slovakia. Terms were not disclosed.
The venture is expected to complement Dana's Glacier Vandervell Bearings business. Tribometal posted 1999 sales of $7.5 million from its single plant. Dana's European sales last year totaled $2 billion of the company's $13.2 billion in sales.
Michelin, Woco in suspension pact
PARIS - French tire maker Michelin and German auto parts firm Woco will combine their shock absorber and suspension units. Woco will own 51 percent of the joint venture, to be called Woco Michelin AVS. The company sees revenues of A220 million this year, rising to A300 million in 2003.
Trafficmaster, Britax strike deal
LONDON - Traffic information provider Trafficmaster plc has entered into a four-year deal with vehicle components and car safety group Britax plc to develop traffic information products. Trafficmaster said the products would display traffic information on interior mirrors in vehicles. The 'traffic mirrors' would be alerted to congestion by Trafficmaster's beacon network. The products would be marketed to motor manufacturers to whom Britax is a leading supplier.