Headlight Maker ZKW Is Said to Explore Sale After Buyer Interest

  • Deal could value Austrian car-parts maker at 1 billion euros
  • ZKW isn’t running formal auction, no certainty of transaction

ZKW Group GmbH, an Austrian supplier of headlights for Ford and Porsche vehicles, is exploring options including a potential sale after receiving takeover interest, people with knowledge of the matter said.

The Wieselburg-based car-parts maker is working with a financial adviser to examine its options, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. ZKW has attracted interest from several suitors including Panasonic Corp., the people said. Any deal could value closely held ZKW at about 1 billion euros ($1.2 billion), according to the people.

ZKW isn’t running a formal auction process, and there’s no certainty the deliberations will lead to a transaction, one of the people said.

Any deal will add to the $48.8 billion of acquisitions involving automotive parts and equipment companies in the past 12 months, data compiled by Bloomberg show. ZKW would bring an acquirer a business with about 5,000 employees spanning countries including the U.S., Czech Republic, China and India.

A spokesman for ZKW said there are no talks concerning a sale of the company, while a representative for Panasonic declined to comment.

ZKW’s products are also used in Mercedes-Benz, Rolls-Royce and Geely brand automobiles. The company, founded in Vienna in 1938, expects sales to reach about 1.2 billion euros this year, up from nearly 1 billion euros in 2016, its website shows.

— With assistance by Takako Taniguchi

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