China's XCMG buys majority of Germany's Schwing

Discussion in 'China' started by cir, Apr 19, 2012.

  1. cir

    cir Senior Member Senior Member

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    Thu Apr 19, 2012 9:49am EDT

    (Reuters) - China's Xuzhou Construction Machinery Group (XCMG) has agreed to buy a majority stake in privately held German machinery manufacturer Schwing, the latest in a series of deals by Chinese companies to acquire German industrial know-how.

    The German concrete pump maker, one of the world's leading suppliers in its field, did not disclose the price of the investment in its statement on Thursday. Reuters first reported a deal was imminent on March 23..

    "The premium brand Schwing is a central part of our strategic development," XCMG head Wang Min said in the statement, which also said German management would remain in charge.

    The deal follows a series of similar tie-ups this year in which Chinese firms have scooped up German groups to gain access to technology, brands and a worldwide distribution network.

    In March, German car parts maker Kiekert said it was being bought by Chinese peer Hebei Lingyun.

    In January, China's Sany Heavy Industry said it would buy Schwing rival Putzmeister in a 360 million euro ($472 million) deal, and LDK Solar invested in German solar group Sunways.

    Schwing's concrete pumps are being used to build the new high-rise building of the European Central Bank in Frankfurt, Dubai's exclusive Jumeirah Beach Residence and New York's new One World Trade Center.

    With the help of XCMG, Schwing hopes to expand onto Asian markets, the company said.

    XCMG is seeking a U.S. dollar loan worth about 160 million euros ($210 million) to refinance a bridge loan to help finance the Schwing acquisition, Thomson Reuters publication Basis Point reported earlier this week.

    Banks are invited to join the three-year term loan, with a road show scheduled for April 25 in Hong Kong, it quoted banking sources as saying.

    Schwing, owned by the Schwing family, posted sales of roughly 500 million euros in 2011. It also posted a profit in 2011, a source close to the company said.

    The Herne, Germany-based company employs about 3,300 staff, but is cutting 160 jobs after its sales dropped by 30 percent amid the economic crisis. After the investment by XCMG, no further job cuts are planned, a spokesperson said.

    Rothschild advised Schwing on the deal.

    ($1 = 0.7621 euros) (Reporting by Arno Schuetze and Sabine Wollrab; Editing by Mark Potter and Jane Baird)

    UPDATE 1-China's XCMG buys majority of Germany's Schwing | Reuters
     
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  3. cir

    cir Senior Member Senior Member

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    Volkswagen to build NW China assembly plant

    Updated: 2012-04-19 15:10(Xinhua)

    URUMQI - Shanghai Volkswagen, German carmaker Volkswagen AG's joint venture in China, plans to set up an assembly plant in Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region this year to explore the markets of northwest China and Central Asia, local commerce officials said Thursday.

    The plant, located in the regional capital Urumqi, is expected to become operational in 2013 and produce 50,000 units of small sedans annually, said Li Yi, an official with the trade and investment bureau of Urumqi's Development Zone.

    Martin Winterkorn, chairman of the Volkswagen Group, was in Urumqi last week to inspect preparations for the new plant. Zhang Chunxian, Xinjiang's top official, told Winterkorn that Xinjiang's auto market is growing rapidly thanks to the improved transport network in the region as well as the network connecting it to neighboring provinces and Central Asian countries.

    He said the Urumqi plant will help Volkswagen "gain a strategic advantage" in the northwest China and Central Asia markets.

    Dongfeng Motor Corporation, a major Chinese carmaker, and Shaanxi Automobile Group Co Ltd, known for its heavy trucks, are also building assembly plants in Urumqi. The combined output of their Urumqi plants, which will focus on trucks and commercial vehicles, will be about 76,000 units a year, Li said.

    Xinjiang covers sprawling 1.66 million square km of land and borders eight countries, including Russia, Kazakhstan and Pakistan.

    Since 2010, China has been pushing for greater opening-up of the resource-rich and strategically-located Xinjiang, aiming to transform it into a regional economic hub from a relatively underdeveloped desert region.

    China-made automobiles exported to Central Asian nations from Xinjiang more than doubled last year to 16,000 units, according to local customs data.

    The revenue of these auto exports also grew by 120 percent to $680 million, according to figures released by the Xinjiang customs office. Over 80 percent of auto products exported to the Central Asia market were heavy trucks.

    Xinjiang's customs attributed the sharp rise in auto exports to economic recovery in Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan and the appeal of low-cost but high-quality China-made automobiles.

    Volkswagen to build NW China assembly plant|Companies|chinadaily.com.cn
     
  4. cir

    cir Senior Member Senior Member

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    April 19, 2012, 10:00 AM

    Ford To Build $760 Million Plant in Eastern China

    By WSJ Staff

    HANGZHOU, China—Ford Motor Co. said Thursday it will build a $760 million factory in eastern China as part of a plan to double its production capacity there by 2015, which would mark the auto maker’s largest industrial expansion in at least 50 years.

    The Dearborn, Mich., car company is spending nearly $5 billion to add plants and new dealerships at a blistering pace, trying to catch up in Asia, where it lags its chief rivals in sales and production capacity. The Hangzhou factory will be part of the company’s Changan Ford Mazda Automobile joint venture.

    By the time the expansion is complete, Ford will be capable of building 1.2 million passenger cars a year in China—nearly half as many vehicles as it built last year in North America.

    “Should we have done this five years ago? Sure. But we can’t change that. We can only change the future,” said Joe Hinrichs, Ford’s Asia chief, in an interview. “We are coming out of the financial crisis a much stronger company and we are now ready to dedicate our resources and attention to Asia Pacific.”

    Ford faces significant hurdles in the region. The company’s China push comes years after many major auto makers, particularly rival General Motors Co., have become well established in the region.

    After years of eye-popping growth, China’s auto sales fell in the first quarter compared with a year earlier and are expected to post their second-straight year of more modest single-digit-percentage growth. Meanwhile, Ford is pouring billions into building factories, hiring workers and adding dealerships. Ford sales fell nearly 14% in the first quarter from a year ago. GM sales rose nearly 9% in the same period.

    The auto maker lost $83 million in its Asia-Pacific region last year as it pumped money into expansion plans. Mr. Hinrichs declined to say whether Ford lost money in China specifically, but he said that the overall Changan Ford Mazda Automobile venture is profitable.

    Meantime, Ford’s rivals are pursuing aggressive growth plans. GM, which with its local joint-venture partners is the nation’s No. 1 foreign auto maker by sales, has plans to build additional factories and is looking to expand its Cadillac luxury brand there. Volkswagen AG, which is No. 2, has made China the center of its global growth plan and is investing heavily there. Hyundai Motor Co., meantime, is in talks with Chinese partner Beijing Automobile Industry Holding Co. to create a China-only brand that will focus on electric cars.

    “The reality is that because of the enormous size of the market, every auto maker of the world considers China as its major opportunity and every Chinese auto maker sees it as a major opportunity,” said Ivo Naumann, Shanghai-based managing director at AlixPartners. “While it is a fantastic market, it is also the most competitive market, and every auto maker is putting massive resources behind it. ”

    Ford is counting on Asia to increase its global sales to eight million vehicles by 2020, up from 5.6 million in 2011, with most of the growth coming from Asia.

    Right now, Ford’s market share in China is 3% and it sells only five models, including the Fiesta subcompact, Edge SUV, Mondeo sedan, S-Max small minivan and the Focus compact. Ford has said the Kuga—the Escape in the U.S.—is among the 15 new models Ford has committed to bring to China by 2015.

    Ford said the Hangzhou factory will become operational in 2015. It will be Ford’s first factory on China’s higher-income east coast, which is the heart of the Chinese auto industry. Ford will be the only auto maker in the coastal town, a popular vacation spot for Chinese tourists.

    Earlier this month, the company said it will spend $600 million to expand a factory in Chongqing. The newly expanded Chongqing manufacturing complex, where Ford is building its new Ford Focus compact car, will be capable of producing 950,000 vehicles a year, up from 600,000. It will be Ford’s biggest manufacturing presence outside of southeast Michigan.

    Despite the daunting competition, Mr. Hinrichs said, Ford has reason to believe its plan will work. Growth in the China auto market will be great enough to allow Ford to increase sales substantially even if it can’t poach buyers from other brands, he said.

    “This is not about what happens in 2012, it’s about setting a foundation for the future,” Mr. Hinrichs said. “We have the power of Ford globally, and if we weren’t doing this globally, we couldn’t afford it.”

    Ford To Build $760 Million Plant in Eastern China - Driver's Seat - WSJ
     
  5. cir

    cir Senior Member Senior Member

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    Apr 18, 2012 5:40 pm

    HP to Build New Printer Manufacturing Facility in China

    By Michael Kan, IDG News

    HP on Tuesday signed an agreement to set up a new printer manufacturing facility in the Chinese city of Chongqing, that is expected to produce 60 million ink-jet and laser printers per year once completed.

    HP CEO Meg Whitman participated in the signing ceremony, meeting with Chinese officials, according to Chongqing's economic and information technology commission. Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn will build the manufacturing facilities in which HP is investing an unspecified amount.

    The manufacturing facility will take two to three years to build, and will be completed over three stages. By 2015, it is expected to annually produce 40 million ink-jet printers, and 20 million laser printers, along with 150 million ink cartridges. The value of the products manufactured annually is expected to be US$25 billion, according to the commission.

    HP did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

    The U.S. company, which ranks as the leading PC vendor in the world, already operates facilities in Chongqing, including a desktop and notebook manufacturing plant. Last year the company announced it would expand its manufacturing base in Shanghai while also building a regional China headquarters in the city. HP is also working to improve its enterprise business in China by investing more in delivering cloud computing products.

    Chongqing, located near southwest China, is also home to the manufacturing and operations facilities of other PC vendors including Acer and Asus. The city is striving to become a major information technology hub in China. But Chongqing has recently become linked to a political scandal involving the city's former party secretary Bo Xilai, who has been removed from his post.

    On Tuesday, Bo Xilai's replacement, Zhang Dejiang met with Whitman, according to government press reports. Zhang welcomed HP's investment in Chongqing, noting that the new manufacturing operation was helping to develop China's western region.

    HP to Build New Printer Manufacturing Facility in China | PCWorld Business Center
     
  6. redragon

    redragon Regular Member

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    Cir, you poor lonely guy. Hard working was, is and will always be the only key to push China forward.
     
  7. cir

    cir Senior Member Senior Member

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    My pleasure. :laugh:
     
  8. cir

    cir Senior Member Senior Member

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    New Zealand gives nod to China firm to buy farms

    WELLINGTON, April 20 | Thu Apr 19, 2012 8:07pm EDT

    (Reuters) - A Chinese investment company won approval for a second time on Friday to buy 16 dairy farms in New Zealand, after a court challenge forced the country's government to review its orginal decision in favour of the purchase.

    Shanghai Pengxin was given the green light to buy the farms for around NZ$200 million ($163 million), after officials imposed strict conditions relating to investment in the land and protection of sensitive sites.

    New Zealand is the only Western nation to have a free trade agreement with China, its second-biggest export customer behind Australia.

    Chinese firms already have significant holdings in New Zealand, but the sale of rural and coastal land to foreign interests is a sensitive issue in a country where agriculture dominates the economy. New Zealand is the world's largest exporter of dairy goods.

    "The combined effect of the benefits being delivered to New Zealand as a result of this transaction is substantial," Associate Finance Minister Jonathan Coleman said in a statement.

    Shanghai Pengxin had said opposition to its purchase of the farms was partly motivated by anti-Chinese sentiment, and had warned that a refusal would likely deter other foreign investors.

    It has promised to upgrade the farms, train New Zealanders to work on them, invest in a New Zealand processing plant and provide money to market the products in China.

    Critics of the sale have questioned what expertise the Chinese group has in farming in New Zealand, where agriculture accounts for around half of economic output.

    A rival New Zealand consortium, whose lower bid was rejected, has said it still wants to buy the farms and keep them in New Zealand hands. The rejection of its bid led to the legal challenge.

    The farms have been on the market for more than two years after the original owner failed to repay bank loans.

    Chinese firms already own New Zealand dairy processor, Synlait, and hold key stakes in listed agribusiness PGG Wrightson Ltd and appliance maker F&P Appliances Ltd .

    Foreign investors are free to invest in New Zealand urban property, but need official approval for purchases of anything but small parcels of rural land.

    The biggest buyers of New Zealand rural land in recent years have been from the United States, Britain, Europe and Australia. (Reporting by Gyles Beckford; Editing by Richard Pullin)

    New Zealand gives nod to China firm to buy farms | Reuters
     

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