Germany’s Thyssenkrupp, Japan’s NSK mull automotive JV

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The two companies signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to explore a tie-up between Thyssenkrupp’s Automotive Technology division and NSK’s steering business, Thyssenkrupp said, adding the goal was to develop an approach for a joint automotive business.

“In the automotive business in particular, size and economies of scale are key factors for achieving success in global markets,” Chief Executive Martina Merz said in a statement.

“A collaboration between our automotive segment and NSK Steering could help us to further strengthen and expand this position.”

The two companies have agreed on a phase of non-binding assessment of the relevant businesses, and aim to make a decision on a possible cooperation model by the end of the year.

Thyssenkrupp Automotive Technology accounted for a third of the company’s adjusted operating profit last year and 13%, or 4.5 billion euros ($4.7 billion), of sales.

($1 = 0.9518 euros)