HONG KONG / SHANGHAI (Reuters) – Government investors are considering buying out BMW's main business partner in China, Brilliance, five sources familiar with the situation told Reuters.
Brilliance China Automotive Holdings Ltd is listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange and has a current market value of $ 4.6 billion.
The buyout will be carried out by the state-controlled Liaoning Provincial Transportation Investment Group, which already owns 12% of Brilliance, the sources said.
The buyout will attract other Chinese government investors and could begin as early as the fourth quarter of this year, two sources said.
Brilliance's parent company, Huachen Automotive Group, said it had received no clear indication that the Transportation Investment Group wants to lead the carmaker's withdrawal from the Hong Kong exchange.
Based in Shenyang City in Liaoning Province in northeastern China, Brilliance is 30% owned by Huachen Group, which is majority owned by the Regional State Asset Regulator.
The regulator supports the deal, which will be another example of the withdrawal of Chinese companies from the Hong Kong stock exchanges. Transportation Investment Group has held talks with several banks to finance the buyout, three sources said.
(Julie Zhu in Hong Kong and Iley Sun in Beijing, translated by Olga Devyatiarova. Editor Anna Kozlova)