Apollo Tyres is competing with Chinese rivals Shandong Linglong Tyre and ChinaChem to acquire South Korea’s No. 2 tyre maker KumhoTire in a deal pegged at $900 million, multiple sources told ET. If the Indian company is successful, the deal will create a tyre maker that ranks among the top seven with a strong presence in the US and Europe.
The three are among four suitors shortlisted with the fourth said to be French heavyweight Michelin, though ET could not confirm this independently. The move follows Apollo’s failed $2.5-billion bid to buy Cooper Tire of the US two years ago. The share sale process for a 42 per cent controlling stake, initiated by a consortium of creditors that took over seven years ago, is in its final stages. Credit Suisse is running an auction process for the creditors, including Woori Bank (which owns 14.2 per cent), Korea Development Bank (13.5 per cent) and KB Kookmn Bank (4.2 per cent).