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Visteon selling stake in China joint venture

By: Rhoda Miel

August 13, 2013

Visteon Corp. has agreed to sell its share of the joint venture Yanfeng Visteon Automotive Trim Systems Co., but will pick up majority control of the electronics venture Yanfeng Visteon Automotive Electronics Inc.

Both deals are with Visteon's joint venture partner in the two businesses, Huayu Automotive Systems Co. Inc. of Shanghai. The agreements are expected to wrap up by June 2015. The transactions are worth a total of $1.5 billion, Visteon said in an Aug. 13 news release.

HASCO will retain a minority interest in Yanfeng Visteon Electronics, but Visteon will have the controlling ownership. Visteon also announced that it will buy up to $1 billion of its shares in a repurchasing program.

Visteon, based in the Detroit suburb of Van Buren Township, Mich., had a non-controlling interest in Yanfeng Visteon Automotive Trim Systems, which produces injection molded interior parts in China, the U.S., Germany and India.

Yanfeng Visteon Electronics is based in Shanghai and has five plants in China making interior electronic components.

Visteon has been looking to decrease its business in interior parts and focus on core operations in electronics and climate control while also building its footprint in Asia.

Both the electronics and interior trim business date to 1994 and joint ventures between Ford Motor Co. and units of Shanghai Automotive Industrial Co. Ford transferred its share to Visteon when it spun off its one-time parts business to an independent company in 2000. SAIC transferred its shares to HASCO in 2009.