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Hanon Systems receives preliminary bids for controlling stake from foreign firms

The corporate logo of Hanon Systems (Hanon Systems)
The corporate logo of Hanon Systems (Hanon Systems)
French automotive parts maker Valeo and three other foreign firms have submitted preliminary bids for a controlling stake in automotive thermal management systems and automotive parts maker Hanon Systems, while local players have decided against the move, sources said Tuesday.

Valeo, a key rival of Hanon Systems, and German automotive parts maker Mahle have reportedly submitted a preliminary bid for the 70 percent stake in Hanon Systems worth 6.6 trillion won ($5.8 billion) as of Tuesday, while investment firms the Carlyle Group and Bain Capital are also in the race.

Top shareholder Hahn and Company put up for sale its 50 percent stake in Hanon Systems, formerly Halla Visteon Climate Control Corp, with the remainder from Hankook Tire & Technology.

Market watchers had expected prospective buyers to include South Korea's LG and SK groups. LG Group has been bolstering its electric vehicle parts business and will reportedly set up a joint venture with Canadian auto parts maker Magna International Inc. next month.

Other potential local bidders also included Halla Group, which established Halla Climate Control Corp., in partnership with Ford Motor Co. in 1986.

LG Electronics and Halla Group have decided not to submit preliminary bids for Hanon Systems.

In 2015, Hankook Tire Co. and Hahn & Company acquired the interest from US auto parts maker Visteon Corp., which took over Halla Climate Control Corp. from Halla Group after South Korea's 1997-98 foreign exchange crisis.

Hanon Systems is a major supplier of automotive thermal and energy solutions systems used for EVs and conventional vehicles powered by internal combustion engines. Industry sources estimate Hanon Systems is the world's No. 2 player in the market. (Yonhap)