Automotive Industries Holding Inc. has agreed to acquire a 40 percent interest in the largest interior trim supplier in Mexico. Automotive Industries, a publicly held company based in Minneapolis, expects to buy the minority share in Interiores Automotrices Summa SA de CV by March. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
IASSA, based in Mexico City, is a licensee of ASAA International Inc. of Sheboygan, Wis., which Automotive Industries purchased early in 1993.
IASSA reports annual sales of about $35 million.
It uses ASAA's patented Woodstock process to produce headliners, sun visors and door panels, and processes vinyl and urethanes to make soft-skinned interior automotive components, William Clement, chief executive officer of Automotive Industries, said in a Dec. 17 telephone interview.
Through the acquisition, Automotive Industries hopes to gain a presence in the Mexican market and improve service to its customers there, according to Clement.
IASSA supplies interior trim components to the Mexican plants of Ford Motor Co., Chrysler Corp., General Motors Corp., Nissan Motor Co. Ltd. and Volkswagen AG.
``Our customer base looks to suppliers with the ability to supply both their U.S. and Mexican subsidiaries, who can transfer technologies - smoothly and seamlessly,'' Clement said.
While IASSA exclusively supplies Mexican automotive operations, Clement said it has the potential to serve other locations, including the United States.
Automotive Industries designs and manufactures interior trim systems and blow molded plastic components for the North American automotive industry. It was the fourth-largest custom injection molder and the fourth-largest industrial blow molder in North America in Plastics News' 1993 rankings.
The company reported sales of $328 million for the year ended Oct. 2.