The demand slowdown facing global automobile sector hasn't stopped Indian auto sector to look at inorganic expansion into overseas markets. After Tata Motors acquired Land Rover-Jaguar last year, auto component maker Motherson Sumi has begun the year by acquiring the global rear view mirror business of UK-based Visiocorp, world's largest rear view mirror producers, for an undisclosed amount. The business had revenues of over €700 million last year and has about 17 manufacturing locations across Europe, the US, Australia and Asia.

After the acquisition, the company will emerge as the largest player globally with clients such as General Motors, Hyundai, Ford, Volkswagen, Renault and BMW. This acquisition is expected to be completed by end of February 2009.

The acquisition will be mainly funded through internal accruals of Motherson Sumi. It will set up a special purpose vehicle (SPV) with a capital of  €30 million which would then raise debt for the transaction. The business being acquired had a normalized EBITDA of about €48 million in 2007. Given this the actual deal amount could be anywhere between €50-200 million. The SPV would be a step down subsidiary between Motherson Sumi and Samvardhana Motherson Finance Ltd(an unlisted public limited company controlled by the Sehgal family, who are the promoters of Motherson Sumi) in the ratio of 51:49.

This SPV would acquire various operating companies involved in design, manufacturing and assembly of rear view mirror business operating in Europe, America, Australia and Asia including India.

Motherson Sumi  group which makes diverse auto parts including wiring harness, air compressors, metal parts and fuel pump parts, has 12 joint venture companies and enjoys 45% domestic market share in mirrors for passenger cars. It also has a joint venture with Visiocorp for the domestic market under which it holds 49%. JLR etc.

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