KIYOSU, Japan — Toyoda Gosei Co. Ltd. is moving on from a deal it made a little more than five years ago.
The firm has entered an agreement to divest its German production subsidiary Toyoda Gosei Meteor to Aeqph GmbH. The move is part of a global restructuring plan at Toyoda Gosei, which the firm said is aimed toward improving earnings growth.
Under the terms of the agreement, TGM and its U.S. subsidiary Meteor Sealing Systems — which a spokesman confirmed includes the U.S. unit's stake in LMI Custom Mixing L.L.C. — will transfer to Munich-based Aeqph.
Toyoda Gosei said that despite previous restructuring efforts the German business "continued to struggle," prompting the sale "after considering remediation measures." The firm added that the deal is on track to be completed by the end of 2019. Financial details were not disclosed, but Toyoda Gosei said it estimates that it will incur a $192 million loss from the transfer.
Based in Bockenem, Germany, TGM was established in April 2014 when Toyoda Gosei acquired the assets of Meteor Gummiwerke K.H. Badje GmbH & Co. K.G. The firm supplies sealing parts, weatherstrips and other rubber components to Daimler A.G., BMW A.G., Audi A.G. and other European auto makers, and employed 1,360 as of March.
At the time of the deal, Toyoda Gosei said Meteor has a strong reputation in sealing parts for luxury vehicles. The acquisition aimed to increase TG's presence in the European market.
Meteor also operates a manufacturing site in Dover, Ohio, which also produces weatherstrips for U.S.-based automotive manufacturers. The site employs 315 people.
Prior to its acquisition by Toyoda Gosei, Meteor and Lauren International had established a joint venture — LMI Custom Mixing L.L.C. — which mixes rubber compounds. Lauren Manufacturing and Lauren Plastics were sold to automotive supplier Cooper Standard Automotive Inc. in 2018, but Lauren International said at the time of the sale it retained its stake in LMI.
In 2016, Toyoda Gosei disclosed a $5 million expansion project that added 40,000 square feet and additional equipment to the Dover site. At the time, the firm said the expansion was in response to one of Meteor's top European customers in addition to added projects from North American original equipment manufacturers.