BMW secures a 15.16 percent stake in SGL Carbon SE

Article by Christian Andrei, on November 20, 2011

Susanne Klatten, a shareholder at BMW and the richest woman in Germany, tightened her grip on SGL Carbon, placing herself ahead of Volkswagen when it comes to carbon fiber technology. Klatten and her family are major investors in BMW. The company has disclosed on Friday that it has obtained a 15.16 percent share in SGL, which adds to the 29 percent stake that Klatten already had.

BMW finance chief Friedrich Eichiner commented that the lightweight construction will have an "increasingly important role" in the future for the automobile industry.

He further stated that the company's share in the SGL Group is "a logical step" that will strengthen their "successful cooperation" even more. The company has disclosed that it was not planning to seek a seat on the supervisory board of SGL. However, it did not reveal the amount paid in order to increase its share in SGL.

As of the closing price on Thursday, the market value of the stock that the automaker had secured was around 444 million euros or $600 million. Klatten, who became a target of a 2007 blackmail plot due to her fortune of around $15 billion, had obtained a blocking share this year of around 29 percent in SGL.

This gave her the right to veto strategic decisions. Skion, Klatten's investment vehicle, stated that it did not plan a full takeover of SGL. Klatten has 12.6 shares in BMW, while the combined stake of her family is 46.7 percent of the automaker. In October 2009, SGL and BMW inked a partnership agreement on lightweight carbon components for its i3 electric vehicle -- also dubbed as the MegaCity project -- a few months after Klatten became a major shareholder in SGL.

SGL has since stated that it does not rule out entering collaboration agreements with other vehicle makers. In February, Volkswagen surprised the market and Klatten by acquiring 8 percent of SGL. Volkswagen is the largest automaker in Europe.

Topics: bmw

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