Cleveland, Ohio – A former Nissan partner has purchasedMagneti Marelli, a Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) subsidiary that makes lighting systems and other automotive components.
Calsonic Kansei, a Japanese company once 42% owned by Nissan, bought Magneti Marelli for about $6.5 billion in cash. Calsonic has a strong North American presence, primarily supporting Nissan plants in Mississippi and Tennessee, and it supplies other global automakers.
The Magneti Marelli merger will slightly more than double Calsonic Kansei’s revenue (based in 2018 numbers) creating a $16 billion sales company about the size of seating maker Adient or wiring harness supplier Yazaki Corp – at or close to the Top 10 largest Tier 1 suppliers.
The combined business will be called Magneti Marelli CK Holdings Co. Private equity firm KKR owns Calsonic, having purchased Nissan’s shares in 2016 and the rest of the company in 2017.
Bed Bolzenius, CEO of the combined company, said, “I’m very confident and excited about our future potential as one firm. As part of this, our relationship with FCA remains an important one, as we continue to serve them as part of our multi-year supply agreement.”
Bolzenius added that the combined company’s management will focus on integrating the divisions, culturally and operationally, to create a global, diversified automotive supplier.
FCA CEO Mike Manley says the sale strengthens the automaker by getting top dollar for the supplier while maintaining long-term supply agreements to guaranty future supplies of Magneti Marelli parts.
“I am confident that this transaction secures a strong future for their employees and other stakeholders,” Manley said.
About the author: Robert Schoenberger is the editor of Today's Motor Vehicles and a contributor to Today's Medical Developments and Aerospace Manufacturing and Design. He has written about the automotive industry for more than 18 years at The Plain Dealer in Cleveland, Ohio; The Courier-Journal in Louisville, Kentucky; and The Clarion-Ledger in Jackson, Mississippi.