Kongsberg Automotive Holding has entered into an agreement to acquire Teleflex' automotive activities plus other vehicle related businesses for $US560m on a cash and debt free basis.

The acquisition has fully committed financing and is expected to close before end of this year, pending regulatory and other customary approvals.

Teleflex is a diversified industrial company listed on the New York Stock Exchange and its unit Global Motion Systems (GMS) is said to have a world leading position in developing, producing and marketing systems for gear shift, seat comfort and fluid systems.

GMS has about 8,000 employees in 16 production facilities in North and South America, 13 factories in Europe and five in Asia. GMS is a long term supplier to automakers including Mercedes Benz, Toyota, Ford, GM, Renault, Peugeot, Lear Corporation, Caterpillar and Scania.

In 2006 GMS had annual revenues of $855m, EBITDA of $82m and EBIT of $52m.

KOA CEO Olav Volldal said: "The acquisition of GMS represents a big step forward for Kongsberg Automotive. This business has been on our acquisition target list since 1998. The combined company will become a $1.5bn operation joining the top 100 automotive supplier club and a market leader with a global manufacturing footprint within our core segments.

"There is an exceptionally strong industrial fit between GMS and Kongsberg Automotive in term of product platforms and customer base. In addition we have identified significant operational improvements and synergy potential."

The transaction is to be fully loan financed by DnBNOR and Nordea.