Continental Announces Purchase of Turkish Tire Company

Continental bought 90% of Oltas SPA, a distributor of passenger and commercial vehicles tires.

Auto parts group Continental has bought 89.66% of Oltas SPA, a Turkish distributor of passenger and commercial vehicle tires, Continental said on July 22. The company did not say how much it will pay for the holding, but reported that Istanbul-based Oltas had sales last year of about 39 million euros (US$62 million)

"With this acquisition, we are significantly improving our market position for commercial vehicle and passenger car tires in Turkey and thus in the growth region Eastern Europe overall," the statement quoted board member Alan Hippe as saying.

Continental is also battling a bid by the family-owned Schaeffler Group, which said last week it was amassing access to a stake of around 36% the the world's fifth biggest auto parts companies, excluding tires.

It was not immediately clear if the Oltas purchase had any bearing on Schaeffler's bid, but the statement said that along with the purchase of a Slovakian and a Finnish firm, "we are constantly on the lookout for meaningful additions to our portfolio and want to continue growing."

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008

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