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Hyundai Capital eyes stake in vehicle leasing unit of German firm

South Korean auto financing firm Hyundai Capital said Thursday that it is in talks with German car rental giant Sixt SE to acquire a stake in the latter’s vehicle leasing unit, Sixt Leasing SE.

The announcement came after recent news reports that the Seoul-headquartered company was trying to acquire Sixt Leasing SE, via its European office Hyundai Capital Bank Europe, to increase its presence in the European car leasing market and gain a competitive edge in the emerging fuel cell electric car segment in the region. Sixt SE is one of the largest rental car companies in the market, along with Hertz, Avis and Europcar.

“The final decision regarding the planned stake acquisition has not been made yet, and the company will make an additional announcement at the right time,” Hyundai Capital said.

HCBE is expected to initially take over a 29 percent stake worth some 1 trillion won ($835.2 million) in the German car leasing firm, and eventually acquire more shares so that it controls the company.

By Kim Young-won (