FRANKFURT -- DaimlerChrysler is in no hurry to sell its 10.5 percent stake in South Korea's Hyundai Motor Co. Ltd. and can wait until conditions are ripe, the carmaker said Wednesday.
Asked about Korean media reports that the well-flagged sale of the $1.06 billion stake could take place as early as next week, a company spokesman in Stuttgart said: "We are under no time pressure to do that, and we are watching the market."
A Hyundai official, who asked not to be identified, played down prospects for a quick sale of Daimler's stake.
"It's highly speculative. If they are really going to sell, they wouldn't have let the market know in advance because that would only put pressure on the stock prices," he said.
"Clearly, they would have to sell, but they wouldn't do so when the market expects that."
DaimlerChrysler's head of corporate development, Ruediger Grube, said in June the sale would go through within two years.
The companies announced on May 12 that DaimlerChrysler would sell its stake after the partners scaled back a 4-year-old alliance for commercial vehicles and cars.
"DaimlerChrysler may sell such shares at any time and under some circumstances will do so within certain specified periods of time," it said at the time without elaborating.
The news came just weeks after DaimlerChrysler pulled the plug on further financial aid to struggling Japanese ally Mitsubishi Motors Corp. Its 37 percent Mitsubishi stake has since fallen to below 25 percent, but it intends to keep it for now.
The moves blew a hole in the ambitious Asia plans of CEO Juergen Schrempp, who once dreamed of creating a global carmaking empire dubbed World Inc.
DaimlerChrysler has not said whether it would sell the Hyundai stock to strategic investors or place it more widely. The company's main priority is to maximize returns on the holding it bought in two tranches in 2000 and 2001 for $571.6 million in cash.