HELLA to quit HBPO joint venture in €290m deal with Plastic Omnium

HELLA, a German automotive part supplier owned by Faurecia, has agreed to sell its stake of 33.33% in Hella Behr Plastic Omnium (HBPO) for €290 million to its joint venture partner Plastic Omnium.

Based in Germany, HBPO offers individual module solutions for cockpit and front-end modules (FEM), air control systems like Rollo, Active Grille Shutter, and other individual aerodynamic solutions, and centre consoles.

Faurecia said that the sale of its stake in HBPO will help it further sharpen its profile as a focused technology company with electronics, lighting, and lifecycle solutions at its core. The French automotive technology company is part of the FORVIA Group.

Faurecia stated: “This announcement marks a first significant step in the FORVIA Group’s non-strategic asset divestment program of €1 billion by the end of 2023, as part of the Group’s plan to reduce its consolidated net debt following the acquisition of HELLA.”

For Plastic Omnium, which is a French automotive supplier engaged in plastics manufacturing and commercialization, the acquisition of HELLA’s stake will give full ownership of the automotive front-end modules provider.

HBPO was established in 2004 as a joint venture between Hella, Plastic Omnium, and Behr (currently MAHLE Group). Plastic Omnium has been the majority shareholder in HBPO since 2018 after it raised its stake to 66.66% by buying out the stake of MAHLE Group in the automotive front-end modules joint venture.

HELLA to quit HBPO automotive front-end modules joint venture in €290m deal with Plastic Omnium

HELLA to quit HBPO automotive front-end modules joint venture in €290m deal with Plastic Omnium. Photo courtesy of HBPO GMBH.

Plastic Omnium said that taking full ownership of HBPO supports its strategy of increasing the value-added content per vehicle, while tapping the increasing demand for electric vehicles.

Laurent Favre — Plastic Omnium CEO said: “The acquisition of the remaining 33.33% of HBPO will allow Plastic Omnium to implement its growth strategy by broadening the range of modules offered.

“Thanks to HBPO’s strong relationships with premium customers, Plastic Omnium will be able to meet demand for more and more complex modular innovations accompanying the shift towards electric vehicles.

“The complementarity of the Group’s business lines will allow Plastic Omnium to offer smart and fully integrated solutions to the automotive market as it transitions toward more sustainable and connected mobility.”

The deal, which is subject to regulatory approvals, is expected to close in Q4 2022.

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