French car parts supplier Valeo to buy German clutch maker FTE Automotive for $914 mn

French car parts supplier Valeo yesterday struck a deal to buy German clutch manufacturer FTE Automotive for €819.3 million ($914 million).

Valeo is buying FTE Automotive from private equity firm Bain Capital, which had acquired the company in 2013 for €400 million.

The deal, which is expected to close as early as the fourth quarter, is subject to approval from European and Brazilian antitrust regulators.

''The acquisition of FTE automotive is perfectly aligned with Valeo's CO2 emission reduction strategy,'' Jacques Aschenbroich, Valeo chairman and CEO, said in a statement. ''FTE automotive is a fast-growing company and a technological leader with a proven ability to combine growth and profitability.''

Ebern, Germany-based FTE automotive is a leading producer of clutch and gear actuators.

The company has 3,700 employees and a diversified industrial footprint in eight countries, including Germany, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Mexico and China.

FTE automotive generated around €500 million in sales in 2015, of which a third in the aftermarket business, and 30 per cent outside Europe.

FTE automotive's product portfolio and customer base are highly complementary to its own, Valeo said in a statement. 

The acquisition will allow Valeo to expand its offering of active actuation systems for transmissions, a strategic and fast-growing market driven by dual clutch technology and the growth of hybrid vehicles, and also strengthen its aftermarket business.

Based in the outskirts of Paris, Valeo is an automotive supplier to all automakers worldwide.

Valeo's technology and systems contribute to the reduction of CO2 emissions and to the development of intuitive driving.

In 2015, the Group generated sales of €14.5 billion and invested over 10 per cent of its original equipment sales in research and development.

The Paris stock exchange-listed company has 134 plants, 17 research centers, 35 development centers and 15 distribution platforms, and employs 82,800 people in 30 countries worldwide.