Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Super yacht builder Ferretti sold to Chinese bulldozer maker Weichai group



Machinery maker Shandong Heavy Industry Group has sealed a deal to take a 75 percent stake in debt-laden Italian luxury yacht maker Ferretti, the latest in a series of Chinese acquisitions of European brands.

The Chinese company said in an emailed statement it will invest EUR178 million in capital and extend credit lines worth EUR196 million. The remaining 25% stake will be acquired by other shareholders that will inject EUR25 million in capital and convert existing debt into equity.

Mr. Tan Xuguang, Chairman of SHIG-Weichai Group, said "Developing the yacht business is one of the Group's strategic goals for the next five years. Ferretti, which possesses iconic international brands, state-of-the-art manufacturing technologies, products of the highest quality and an extensive sales network, is an ideal partner with strong strategic values. Through the acquisition, the Group will cooperate closely with this world-renowned yacht maker, providing Ferretti with new channels to market and capital support as well as other resources with which it can expand more effectively into emerging markets, a key area of potential growth for Ferretti. Synergies between the Group and Ferretti can be unleashed through the sharing of resources and industrial integration. Ferretti's overall competitive advantages in production cost, sales channels, after-sales service and financial strength will be improved, creating a win-win situation that will allow Ferretti to consolidate its leading position in the luxury yacht market."

China is becoming the world's largest market for luxury goods and, increasingly, mainland investors believe buying higher-end products will move them up the value chain and result in fatter profit margins. Many also believe they can tailor overseas products to local tastes.

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