Brazil's Iochpe-Maxion to buy US-based Hayes Lemmerz for $725 mn

Iochpe-Maxion SA, Brazil's largest maker of wheels and frames for vehicles yesterday agreed to buy US-based auto parts supplier Hayes Lemmerz International Inc for about $725 million including debt of around $23 million.

101-year-old Michigan-based Hayes Lemmerz is the world's largest producer of aluminum and steel wheels for passenger cars, light trucks and steel wheels for commercial trucks and trailers.

The company has come a long way since it manufactured wooden spoked wheels for the Ford Model T in 1908, to currently having 17 facilities located in 12 different countries with an annual capacity to make 63.4 million wheels.

Hayes Lemmerz sells its products to every major North American, Japanese, and European manufacturer of passenger cars and light trucks and to commercial highway vehicle customers throughout the world. Its customers include BMW, Daimler, Fiat, Ford, General Motors and Honda.

Hayes Lemmerz, which emerged from Chapter 11 reorganisation in late 2009, reported net income of $39.3 million on sales of $890.5 million for the first six months of its 2011 fiscal year ending on 31 July 2011.

Iochpe-Maxion is a leading manufacturer of wheels and frames for commercial vehicles and railway freight cars and castings. The company has nine industrial plants in Brazil in São Paulo, Minas Gerais and Rio de Janeiro, Mexico and China.