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Kumho Tire sale attracts foreign tire makers

By 최희석
  • Published : Oct 19, 2016 - 12:48
  • Updated : Oct 19, 2016 - 12:48
[THE INVESTOR] The bid to take controlling stake in Kumho Tire  could go down to a competition between non-Korean entities. The firm’s creditors are currently looking to sell their 42 percent stake in the tire maker. The preliminary bids will be received on Nov. 9.

According to finance industry sources, all strategic investors that received information on the deal are overseas entities. From within Korea, a small number of private equity funds are said to have shown interest in the deal. 


The booth of Kumho Tire at Tokyo Auto Salon 2016 displays a racing car fitted with the firm’s UHP tires and various tire solutions. Kumho Tire


Industry watchers say that large international tire makers such as Goodyear, Yokohama Tire and Michelin are likely to show interest in the Korean tire maker. For European and US companies, Kumho Tire is said to represent an easier route into the Asian market.

Kumho Tire currently operates nine overseas plants in China, Vietnam and the US. For companies hoping to expand in the Chinese market, Kumho Tire’s plants in China represent a chance to secure production facilities in China. The Chinese government is currently withholding approval for new tire plants due to oversupply issues.

For Korean tire makers, however, Kumho Tire is said to hold little merit, with local competitors a similar portfolio.

By Choi He-suk (cheesuk@heraldcorp.com)