Tenneco Automotive (NYSE: TEN – news) and Futaba Industrial Co. have announced that they have signed a strategic alliance to pursue opportunities to design, manufacture and market emission control products and systems for automotive original equipment manufacturers. In connection with the alliance, the two companies have also entered into a joint venture and asset purchase agreement to establish a joint venture at Burnley, England.
“We are very pleased to join with Futaba in an alliance that will capture the strengths of two leaders in emission control,” said Mark P. Frissora, chairman and CEO, Tenneco Automotive. “To be successful in today’s market, suppliers must be positioned to meet the needs of customers worldwide. This alliance will enhance the global engineering and manufacturing support for our Japan-based customers by bringing together Futaba’s engineering and manufacturing presence in Japan and our global manufacturing capabilities.”
The strategic alliance will serve original equipment manufacturers — Japan-based or North American or European-based customers in Japan — whose global platforms require Japan-based engineering and/or manufacturing support. Drawing on Tenneco Automotive’s worldwide presence and Futaba’s key customer relationships, the alliance will offer a single solution to the ever-increasing demands of industry globalization.
“Through this strategic alliance, we will conduct product development, cost planning, product preparation planning and its control, primarily in Japan. I want to make this an alliance that can deliver top products — in terms of both quality and cost, which will be appreciated by automobile manufacturers around the world — in a timely fashion,” said Itsuo Kozuka, President, Futaba Industrial Co. “By utilizing our respective manufacturing bases and engaging in profitable corporate activities, we are aiming at becoming a presence, which can take leadership on the international market.”
Under a joint venture and asset purchase agreement, the companies will also form a joint venture at Tenneco Automotive’s existing manufacturing facility in Burnley, England. A new joint venture company, owned 51 percent by Futaba and 49 percent by Tenneco Automotive, will acquire Tenneco Automotive’s Burnley manufacturing assets for approximately 13.9 million pounds. The joint venture will be known as Futaba-Tenneco U.K. Limited, and will continue to develop and produce emission control components and stamped products.
The joint venture and asset purchase agreements are subject to customary conditions to closing, including receipt of required government approvals. It is expected that the joint venture formation and asset purchase will be completed before the end of the year.
Tenneco Automotive is a $3.3 billion manufacturing company headquartered in Lake Forest, Ill., with 24,000 employees worldwide. Tenneco Automotive is one of the world’s largest producers and marketers of ride control and exhaust systems and products, which are sold under the Monroe® and Walker (R) global brand names. Among its products are Sensa-Trac® and Reflex (R) shocks and struts, Rancho® shock absorbers, Walker® Quiet-Flow(TM) mufflers and DynoMax(TM) performance exhaust products, and Monroe® Clevite(TM) vibration control components.
Futaba Industrial Co. Ltd., established on November 1, 1945, is a leading manufacturer and marketer of automotive equipment (including emission control components), office equipment parts and welding equipment. The company is headquartered at 1 Ochaya, Hashime-cho, Okazaki, Aichi Prefecture. With 2,500 employees and seven manufacturing facilities and two manufacturing subsidiaries in Japan, the company’s customers include Toyota Motor Corp., Daihatsu Motor Co., Hino Motors Ltd., Mitsubishi Motors Corp., Honda Motor Co., Suzuki Motor Corp., Fuji Xerox Co., and Matsushita Electric Industrial Co.