Denso and Yazaki have received partial payments for accounts receivable from failed General Motors Corp through a US government financial support programme, sources familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.
Both companies, which applied for the US programme set up to avert a chain of bankruptcies among auto parts suppliers, were likely to recover a majority of the debts owed by GM, the sources said. Denso and Yazaki would be the first known cases of the programme being applied to Japanese companies, Kyodo News noted.
Other Japanese firms have similarly asked for US government aid to guarantee the receivables from GM so adverse affects on the autoparts industry are likely to be limited if those applications go through.
At the same time, with some bigger US parts makers with closer ties to GM collapsing, analysts said it remained uncertain how widespread the GM fallout would be on the industry as a whole.
At the end of May, air conditioner specialist Denso was owed $29.23m and wire harness maker Yazaki $13.73m in trade debts by GM, according to papers submitted to a US bankruptcy court when the auto giant filed for Chapter 11 protection on 1 June.
Denso and Yazaki were both ranked among the top 50 holders of unsecured debt in GM.
”There are some debts paid off by GM so we expect to be able to recover the entire amount (in debt),” a Denso official told Kyodo News without specifying the exact amount of payments already made.
A Yazaki official similarly said: ”GM has not sought any reduction of debt so we have no problem with recovering the debts.”
While Japanese autoparts makers face fewer risks of the unsecured GM debts going sour, it is possible their trading volume with the automaker will be reduced following the emergence of a new and leaner GM on Friday.
Before the GM bankruptcy, private credit-research agency Teikoku Databank found that over 100 Japanese auto-related and other firms may be unable to recover accounts receivable that GM owes them.
But the US auto giant rapidly completed the sale of its core profitable assets to a new government-backed company and achieved a rare speedy exit out of bankruptcy within around 40 days of the Chapter 11 filing.