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German Automotive Casting Group Sold to CITIC

July 8, 2011
Buyer casts, forges aluminum auto wheels KSM operates 6 foundries in China, Czech Rep., Germany,

KSM Castings Group, which includes six light-metal automotive diecasting and permanent mold foundries in Germany, the Czech Republic, and China, has been sold to China's CITIC B Manufacturing Co. Ltd. Dicastal supplies aluminum automotive wheels produced at six casting and forging operations in China.

CITIC is the China International Trust and Investment Corporation, a state-owned investment company with numerous financial, industrial, and trading subsidiaries in China and around the world.

KSM casts a wide variety of automotive structural, chassis, and powertrain components. The group includes Kloth-Senking Metallgiesserei in Hildesheim, Germany; Druckgusswerk Fritz Volkel, in Wuppertal, Germany; DGT Druckgiesstechnik, in Radevormwald, Germany; KSM Castings Wernigerode GmbH, in Wernigerode, Germany; KSM Castings CZ a.s., in Hrdek, Czech Republic; and KSM Castings Changchun, in Changchun, China.

KSM is a supplier to automotive OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers that include Volkswagen Group, Daimler, Benteler, Bosch, ZF, and TRW.

The seller is the British investment group Cognetas, which reportedly received $430 million, though details of the transaction were not released. Cognetas led a management buyout of the onetime ThyssenKrupp Fahrzeugguss operations from ThyssenKrupp AG in 2005.

Dr.-Ing. Frank Boshoff, CEO of KSM, stated: “Cognetas has been a very supportive shareholder and together with its industrial advisors provided valuable expertise for KSM. Under Cognetas’ ownership we have redefined KSM’s business strategy, invested over EUR 135 million ($193.5 million) to support growth in our German and Czech plants and internationalized KSM’s footprint by establishing a presence in China. We welcome CITIC Dicastal as our new owner as this combination offers a host of opportunities, in particular in the strongly growing Asian automotive market.”

"This investment is an important step for CITIC Dicastal towards expanding into the businesses of chassis, powertrain and auto body, as well as broadening the technological capabilities in the Group," stated Zuo Xu, president of CITIC Dicastal. Zuo called the acquisition an opportunity for "excellent cross-selling potential."