Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), a subsidiary of Tata Motors Ltd, has acquired Bowler Motorsport Ltd., a United Kingdom-based manufacturer of all-terrain performance cars, parts and rally raid vehicles.
In a filing with stock exchanges, the Mumbai-headquartered Tata Motors said that the acquisition was a natural fit for the company’s special vehicle operations business, especially because of Bowler’s expertise in all-terrain vehicle dynamics, low-volume production techniques and component durability.
The company had already partnered with Land Rover in 2012, the filing said. JLR special vehicle operations managing director Michael van der Sande said that the acquisition would also help it in creating a diverse portfolio of products and businesses within the special vehicle operations segment.
“Our immediate focus is on ensuring continuity of support for Bowler employees and customers during this transition to Jaguar Land Rover,” van der Sande said. Bowler’s full business is now fully-owned by JLR, and the company will continue to operate from its premises in the UK’s Belper.
Shares of Tata Motors Ltd. ended the day 1.76% down at Rs 176 apiece.
Tata Motors acquired Jaguar Cars Ltd. and Land Rover from the Ford Motor Company in 2008, merging the two into one brand. The brand manufactures several classes of vehicles, most notably four-wheeled drive cars such as the Range Rover, Defender and Discovery.
In 2017, JLR’s new-generation mobility solutions investment arm InMotion Ventures Ltd. bet $25 million on the Silicon Valley-based ride-sharing startup Lyft. InMotion, which was set up in 2016, has invested in at least six ride-sharing and connected car solutions startups.
News of the acquisition comes after reports earlier this week said that Tata Motors was in initial talks with two Chinese automobile companies for a tie-up for its passenger vehicles business.
The potential partnership – which will include the joint development of technologies and sharing of manufacturing capacities – is expected to help Tata Motors significantly reduce its consolidated debt that stood at Rs 95,465 crore as of 30 September. This is includes UK unit JLR.