DETROIT -- Cooper-Standard Holdings Inc. will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange Thursday as the sealing, fuel and brake system supplier embarks on a new growth strategy.
Common stock of the parent company of Cooper-Standard Automotive Inc. will be issued under the symbol CPS and will discontinue being quoted on the over-the-counter market on Thursday, the company said in a news release this week.
CEO Jeffrey Edwards said the listing positions the supplier with the top performers in the industry and will allow it to grow in North America and abroad.
"Clearly, this is the path we've been on in the last two years; we've been aggressively pursuing this," Edwards said in an interview with Crain's Detroit Business, an affiliate of Automotive News.
"This really allows Cooper-Standard to gain prominence and certainly raises the company's profile for the analysts that cover the space, and the limited coverage impacted the volumes traded on a daily basis. This, without a doubt, meets the financial standards of the world's elite corporations."
Edwards said the listing process began when the supplier split from Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. in 2004. However, the process stopped when Cooper-Standard filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2009 during the automotive industry collapse.
Cooper-Standard exited bankruptcy in May 2010 in the hands of several hedge funds, including Silver Point Capital and Oak Hills Advisors, after cutting $650 million in debt.
It weighed options to sell to private equity after the exit. Three private-equity firms -- The Carlyle Group, Cerberus Capital Management and Platinum Equity -- were interested in buying the company, but in October 2011 the board of directors discontinued the evaluation process due to market conditions.
Moving forward, the company is assessing divestment opportunities for its anti-vibration business and thermal management system business, Edwards said. He said the company will continue to focus on growth for its sealing, fuel and brakes businesses going forward.
"We're committed to our three core businesses and, to us, they are clear drivers for profitable growth," Edwards said. "Our customers are very supportive of this strategy, and as a company, you have so much cash, so we're focusing on these groups."
Edwards said strategic acquisitions are in the future for those businesses. Cooper-Standard acquired Jyco Sealing Technologies Inc. in July, adding three additional plants in Canada, China and Mexico.
"There are other opportunities that we are looking at," Edwards said. "We're having more discussions with our customers; we believe acquisition has been part of the history of Cooper-Standard, and there is no doubt that in the coming months, that will continue."