Tenneco Inc. saw a few changes last year.
Quite a few.
In February the company agreed to a $7.1 billion acquisition by private equity firm Apollo Global Management. Shareholders approved the move in June and Apollo finalized the purchase Nov. 17.
"We are excited for Tenneco to enter this exciting next chapter with Apollo and together see compelling opportunities to accelerate Tenneco's growth trajectory and enhance operations," Tenneco CEO Jim Voss said in a press release issued by Apollo the day the transaction closed. "I look forward to leading the talented team at Tenneco and serving our customers and partners around the world."
Voss succeeded CEO Brian Kessler, who had signaled he would step down once the acquisition was finalized. According to Apollo, Voss brings extensive manufacturing and management experience to the post, having spent more than 25 years in the specialty materials industry. He has served as an operating partner to Apollo Funds since 2012.
Most recently, Voss was the president and CEO of Vectra, a technology-based industrial growth company.
Rumors of the marriage between Tenneco and Apollo date back to January 2020, when Crain's Detroit Business reported that Apollo had offered $4.3 billion for the auto supplier. It was another mile marker on the rocky road Tenneco traveled as it worked to find its footing following the $5.4 billion acquisition of Federal-Mogul L.L.C. in 2018.
Shortly after the Federal-Mogul acquisition, Tenneco disclosed plans to split into two publicly traded companies—a $6.4 billion replacement automotive parts company and a $10.7 billion powertrain technology firm.
A year later, Tenneco dubbed the spin-off company Driv Inc., saying it would operate as a catalog of well-known brand names, five of which were more than a century old. The product lines would include Monroe, Champion, Oehlins, Moog, Walker, Fel-Pro, Wagner, Ferodo, Thrush, National, Sealed Power and Axios.
The aim was to spin off the company in 2020, but plans were delayed due to unfavorable market conditions.
Tenneco, which also operates the Clevite Elastomers business, is the 12th largest automotive supplier worldwide, according to Automotive News data. The company reported total global OEM parts sales of more than $15 billion in 2021.