Luxshare, a large player in the Chinese computer, communications and medical sectors, just went global in the auto industry.
In a deal announced last week, Luxshare acquired ZF Friedrichshafen AG's body control systems unit, an auto parts business that immediately gives Hong Kong-headquartered Luxshare automotive customers and factories around the world.
Until now, Luxshare has been focused mainly on supplying consumer and industrial electronics segments in China with cables, circuits and connectors for computers, communications devices and medical equipment.
Luxshare intends to operate the new automotive business as an independent company and maintain its headquarters in Radolfzell, Germany. ZF said the body control systems management team will continue to lead the business.
The body control operations have automotive customers worldwide and produce steering column modules, electronic control panels, radio frequency electronics, HVAC controls and remote keyless and passive entry access systems, among others.
The acquisition gives Luxshare nearly 6,000 employees at 16 locations in 11 countries, and 11 sales and engineering offices in five countries.
ZF, with global 2016 sales to automakers of 35.2 billion euros ($37.8 billion), has been remaking its own identity in recent years to capitalize on autonomous drive technologies.
"Even though the global body control systems business is operating successfully and on a financially healthy basis, it is a logical decision that will enable the global body control systems business to better develop outside of the ZF Group," said Franz Kleiner, ZF's board member for North America, in a statement.
Terms of the sale were undisclosed, but this year in commenting on reports that the business unit was for sale, ZF CEO Stefan Sommer was quoted confirming it could go for $1 billion.
Reuters contributed to this report.