Temasek, others eye Warburg's stake in Indian tyre maker - sources

Fri Jan 11, 2013 5:01pm IST

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REUTERS - Private equity firms including Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings and KKR & Co (KKR.N) are separately in advanced talks to buy Warburg Pincus LLC's majority stake in Indian tyre maker Alliance Tire Group for about $400 million, three sources with direct knowledge of the matter said.

Other interested bidders include U.S. private equity firms Advent International and TPG Capital, said the sources, all of whom declined to be named as the details of a possible deal are not yet public.

Alliance Tire aimed to generate sales of more than $600 million in 2012, its website showed.

U.S.-based private equity firm Warburg Pincus, which invested in Alliance in 2007, is selling its roughly 72 percent stake in the company, the sources said, adding that final bids are expected to be invited by the end of this month.

Two other minority investors may also sell their stakes in Alliance, giving the buyer roughly 75 percent of the tyre maker, two of the sources told Reuters on Friday.

The company owns two manufacturing plants, one each in Israel and India, and has a sales presence in more than 120 countries, according to its website. Alliance's tires are also made at contract manufacturing facilities in China and Taiwan.

Ashok Mahansaria, founder of Alliance Tire Group, did not respond to an email seeking comment. Warburg Pincus and Temasek declined to comment when contacted by Reuters, while KKR, Advent and TPG did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

(Reporting by Sumeet Chatterjee and Indulal P.M. in MUMBAI and Stephen Aldred in HONG KONG; Editing by Tony Munroe)

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