It's difficult to imagine a major automotive supplier without brake technology in its portfolio, but it's bound to happen: the Bosch Group intends to sell its global foundation brakes business to a private equity firm. Since Bosch is not known for making rash decisions, this carve-out is certainly going to have some impact on the industry.
»In selling our foundation brakes business to KPS Capital Partners, we have chosen a leading private equity firm with many years of experience in the industrial sector,« said Bernd Bohr, member of the Bosch board of management and chairman of the Automotive Group.
(Dr. Bernd Bohr, courtesy of Bosch)
This carve-out concludes the realignment of the brake operations of this global supplier of technology and services. Bosch had announced its intention to restructure its brake operations in spring 2009. This was followed at the end of 2009 by the sale of Bosch's foundation brakes business in North America to the Japanese brake manufacturer Akebono Brake Industry, Tokyo. The remaining global foundation brakes business is to be transferred to KPS Capital Partners and its affiliates in spring 2012. It comprises 20 locations in Europe, Asia Pacific, and South America, of which 15 are manufacturing sites.
In the future, Bosch’s brake operations will be focused on brake boosters and brake control systems. Bosch will retain and systematically expand the aftermarket business, including production of brake disks and brake pads.
Michael Psaros, a KPS Managing Partner, said, »KPS is very excited to create one of the leading manufacturers of foundation brakes, building on our many years of experience investing in the automotive industry. In addition, the combination of the new company’s customer relationships and knowledge base of its thousands of associates worldwide, together with the financial resources provided by KPS, will accelerate the company’s growth as an independent enterprise.«
Martina Merz, Chief Executive Officer of the Foundation Brakes Business, said, »Our objective is to build a leading supplier of foundation brakes and I believe that the company’s strong balance sheet and access to KPS’s financial resources will enable it to achieve that objective. I am very confident that by tailoring the business processes to foundation-related requirements and by continuing to leverage the skill, creativity and talent of our associates, the new company will achieve its full potential.«