Hitachi Mulling Sale of Clarion to French Auto Parts Maker


Tokyo, Oct. 25 (Jiji Press)--Japan's Hitachi Ltd. <6501> is considering selling car navigation system-making subsidiary Clarion Co. <6796> to major French auto parts maker Faurecia SA as part of its moves to review operations with low profitability, informed sources said Thursday.

Hitachi, which currently owns some 60 pct of outstanding Clarion shares, hopes to sell most of the stake in a tender offer planned by Faurecia, the sources said. The value of the sale is expected to reach some 80 billion yen, according to the sources.

Clarion, based in the city of Saitama, north of Tokyo, supplies car navigation systems and other products to automakers in Japan and abroad for sales under their own brands.

In the business year to March, Clarion, listed on the first section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange, posted consolidated sales of 183,056 million yen, down 6.0 pct from the preceding year, and a net profit of 2,079 million yen, down 73.1 pct.

The company has some 7,700 employees on a consolidated basis.

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Jiji Press