Mitsui Pays GE Capital $750 Million for Stake in Truck Company

Mitsui & Co., Japan’s second-biggest trade-house, agreed to pay $750 million for a 20 percent stake in a U.S. truck leasing company, another step in the company’s drive to reduce it’s dependence on raw material businesses.

Mitsui will acquire the stake in Penske Truck Leasing Co. from GE Capital Corp., the Tokyo-based company said today in a statement. Penske has a fleet of about 216,000 trucks, semi-tractors and trailers in North America, according to the statement.

Mitsui’s investment reflects a broader move by Japanese trading houses to focus on non-resource assets as global commodity and energy prices weaken. In 2013, it bought a 20 percent stake in Vale SA’s cargo unit for $470 million.

Subsidiaries of Penske Corp. will remain majority shareholders of the trucker with 50.1 percent and GE Capital retains 29.9 percent. Mitsui said it’s already a strategic investor in one of the subsidiaries, Penske Automotive Group.

Mitsui was little changed at 1,651.5 yen as of 11:14 a.m. in Tokyo trading.

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