$715-million bid for Uniwheels AG means capacity, access to automotive OEMs
- Offers for private, public shares
- New private equity
- Plants in U.S., Mexico, Germany, Poland
Superior Industries supplies aluminum wheels to BMW, Fiat Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, Mazda, Nissan, Subaru, Tesla, Toyota, and Volkswagen. Uniwheels AG supplies Audi, Bentley, Jaguar Land Rover, Mercedes/AMG, PSA Group, Porsche, Skoda, Volkswagen, and Volvo.
Superior Industries International Inc. has made a $715-million bid to acquire Uniwheels AG, a deal that it expects will establish itself a global supplier of cast aluminum wheels to numerous automakers.
Superior Industries calls itself “the largest manufacturer of aluminum wheels for passenger cars and light-duty vehicles in North America.” It casts and finishes the wheels at plants in Fayetteville, AR, Southfield, MI, and Chihuahua, Mexico, which are supplied to BMW, Fiat Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, Mazda, Nissan, Subaru, Tesla, Toyota, and Volkswagen.
Uniwheels is described as the third-largest supplier of aluminum automotive wheels to Europe’s automakers, including Audi, BMW, Bentley, Jaguar Land Rover, Mercedes/AMG, PSA Group, Porsche, Skoda, Volkswagen, and Volvo. It also has presence supplying aluminum wheels to the region’s automotive aftermarket.
Uniwheels has two plants at Werdohl, Germany, and one in Stalowa Wola, Poland.
Don Stebbins, Superior Industries president and CEO stated, “The acquisition immediately establishes us as a leading global supplier of aluminum wheels, diversifies our customer base and end markets, expands our geographic reach, and creates a platform to better serve our global customers.”
Other advantages that the buyer listed would include establishing a “global manufacturing capacity” and a larger platform for further investment; complementary R&D, engineering capabilities and process technologies, to enhance overall operational efficiency; and immediate accretion to earnings per share.
“With no manufacturing overlap, the combined business will require minimal restructuring actions and create long-term value” for shareholders, Superior stated.
The transaction, which Superior Industries expects to complete by May 31, would be structured in two stages: it will acquire all the privately held shares (61.3%) of Uniwheels from Uniwheels Holding (Malta) Ltd., paying $57.20 per share; and it will stage a $59.60 per share offer for the outstanding publicly held shares.
The transaction will be financed by $660 million in debt, along with a $150-million investment by a private-equity firm, TPG Growth. TPG will gain an undisclosed equity stake in Superior.
“The combination of Uniwheels’ and Superior’s management teams, its workforce, and operations will strengthen relationships with OEMs throughout the world,” predicted Dr. Thomas Buchholz, CEO and chairman of Uniwheels.