BERLIN (Nov. 5, 2008) — German parts maker Schaeffler Group might allow another shareholder to take a large stake in Continental A.G., Schaeffler co-owner Maria-Elisabeth Schaeffler told those attending the Automobilwoche Congress in Berlin.
Schaeffler said she does not exclude a strategic investor with a long-term commitment from buying a big stake in Continental amid the current economic conditions.
The economic downturn would not affect Schaeffler´s long-term strategy to bind her company and Continental closer together to create a strong and innovative automotive supplier, she said.
In recent weeks, German media have reported that family-owned Schaeffler may sell as much as 25 percent of Continental to investors to alleviate the financial burden of its takeover of Europe´s second-largest auto parts manufacturer.
Schaeffler controls more than 90 percent of Continental´s stock after agreeing Aug. 21 to buy Continental. At that time it pledged to limit its holdings to less than 50 percent.
Schaeffler faces increasing pressure to fund the takeover after investors tendered 82.4 percent of Continental´s capital—more than Schaeffler anticipated.