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PE Funded Argentum Motors Buys Majority Stake In French Co. Heuliez

16 October, 2008

Private equity funded Argentum Motors floated by Hyundai India’s former president BVR Subbu,

Spicejet promoter Ajay Singh, and broadband entrepreneur Ashish Deora, has bought in a majority stake in French contract major, prototype specialist and electric vehicle giant Heuliez.

It has  been pursuing Heuliez since April this year. Heulize at present makes components for Peugeot and a few other European brands but lately it had not been doing well. It was up for grabs and now post  acquisition, Argentum will shift a large part of Heuliez’s production to India and will be supplying cheaper components to European car majors.

Argentum has been funded by private equity and hedge funds D E Shaw, Rand Corporation of South Africa-promoted proprietary fund Satwa based in Hong Kong and IL&FS, who took collectively 10 per cent, late last year. The three funds had collectively forked out Rs 200 crore and had also provided the company a loan worth Rs 100 crore.

Last year, Argentum had taken over the Daewoo Motors India factory near Delhi for Rs 800 crore. It has acquired an engine and transmission plant with a capacity of 40,000 annually, a press factory with a capacity to service 200,000 cars, an aluminum die casting unit

to handle 17,500 tonnes of castings, a 40 MW plant, plastic shop, an assembly line to make 250,000 cars annually (and a research and development centre) plus land for development.

In its tie-up with French aviation and technology major Dassault Systemes, the duo are working towards setting up a centre of excellence, Argentum Engineering Design (AED) in Noida  it is aiming to provide powertrain solutions to various companies.

Lately, Chrysler is also looking at tying-up with Argentum Motors (AML) for taking up contract manufacturing for its sports utility vehicles (SUVs) (including Grand Cherokee and Jeep Cherokee) and the Dodge range in India. It was only recently, Carnation Auto , a multi brand auto sales & service venture, formed by former Maruti MD, Jagdish Khattar got funded by IFCI and PremjiInvest.


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Auto majors eye sourcing pact with Argentum owned by Ashish Deora and Team

MUMBAI: A couple of European and Asian auto majors including Peugeot-Citroen of France are in talks with Argentum Motors to manufacture components and cars, it is reliably learnt.

The partnership will involve joint sourcing for domestic and global requirements and assembly operations. Argentum Motors was set up by Hyundai Motors India former president BVR Subbu, SpiceJet promoter Ajay Singh and broadband entrepreneur Ashish Deora.

Argentum Motors had acquired Surajpur-based Daewoo facility for Rs 765 crore late last year. The company is now equipped to produce 4 lakh engines, 4 lakh gear boxes and 35,000 aluminium die casting division per annum. It has a press shop to produce body parts, moulding machines to make plastic parts, a paint shop and a captive power plant.

Mr Subbu is the CEO while Mr Singh is the chairman of Argentum. When contacted, Mr Subbu refused to share details. “We are in talks with a number of companies,” he said. German and Asian auto firms which do not have a manufacturing base in India plan to take advantage of low production costs.

The plant will manufacture engines and transmissions for international original equipment manufacturers and also act as a contract manufacturer or a third party assembly centre for cars and commercial vehicles. The plant is expected to begin production by April. “Our immediate concern right now is to get the component plant started,” said Mr Subbu.

Daewoo Motors India closed down its facility in 2001, after it ran into creditor problems. The plant manufactured Cielo, Matiz and Nexia cars and produced engines, gear boxes and body parts. The Daewoo manufacturing facility in India is the third largest after Maruti Suzuki and Hyundai.

Argentum is also planning to invest around Rs 500 crore to upgrade the facility. The three promoters of the company will eventually hold around 12% in the company after the debt is converted into equity and fresh investors are roped in.

“This capacity will attract a large number of global auto manufacturers as the company has all the building blocks for integrated car and component manufacturing,” said an analyst of a Mumbai-based brokerage.


Miriyam John Koshy . 6 years ago

I have a question… Do Argentum Motors started offering their shares to the existing shareholders fo Daewoo Motors India. If so then when is the cut off date to purchase those shares.

slash . 6 years ago

Argentum motors of Ashish Deora – A Mumbai Based Entrepreneur Argentum Motors to Expand Capacity to Produce 0.4 Million Small Cars.

PE Funded Argentum Motors Buys Majority Stake In French Co. Heuliez

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