ThyssenKrupp explores sale of axle systems manufacturing unit

ThyssenKrupp AG, Germany's largest steelmaker, plans to sell its automotive contract assembly unit, which makes axle systems for car makers, Reuters yesterday reported, citing two sources familiar with the deal.

The potential sale comes three years after ThyssenKrupp sold its automotive components manufacturer Tailored Blanks to the China-based Wuhan Iron and Steel for an undisclosed price.

The Essen-based company has hired BNP Paribas to find a buyer for the automotive systems sub-division, which has annual sales of around €1 billion ($1.1 billion), the report said.

ThyssenKrupp has contacted axle makers as well as private equity groups regarding the possible divestment, the report added.

ThyssenKrupp's automotive contract assembly unit designs, manufactures and supplies assembly systems for all types of axle transmission. From passenger car to truck rear axle transmissions it offers turnkey assembly systems for front and rear axle transmissions, including the related measurement systems, test equipment and test systems.

Its plants are located in Germany, Mexico, the US, Hungary and France.

ThyssenKrupp, whose business stretches from submarines to lifts, is a diversified industrial group with around 155,000 employees working in nearly 80 countries. In fiscal year 2013/2014 ThyssenKrupp generated sales of around €41 billion.