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Graeme Hart's Rank Group may sell US auto parts businesses

Graeme Hart's Rank Group may sell its US auto parts businesses as New Zealand's richest man seeks to reduce debt, Reuters reported, citing people familiar with the matter who asked not to be identified. Auckland-based Rank Group declined to comment to BusinessDesk.

Rank has spoken to investment banks in recent weeks about potentially selling two automotive aftermarket companies, UCI International and FRAM Group Holdings, Reuters said. Rank acquired UCI for US$980 million and FRAM Group for US$950 million in 2011 and the businesses are operated by a common senior management team, Reuters said.

The discussions are at an early stage and no final decision has been made on whether Rank will try to sell both companies, Reuters cited the unidentified people as saying. Falling prices and lower profit margins are leading to consolidation in the highly fragmented car parts aftermarket, Reuters said.

Last month, Reuters reported that Rank Group was also exploring the sale of SIG Combibloc Group that could value the world's second-largest maker of drink cartons at around US$5 billion.

The transactions would help Hart reduce billions of debt accumulated during a series of leveraged buy-outs over the last five years, which gave Hart a commanding global position in the packaging industry. Two months ago, Hart sold out of the pulp, paper and packaging businesses of Carter Holt Harvey, although he continues to own the building products arm of CHH.

Hart is worth about $6.4 billion, according to the 2013 NBR Rich List.


Comments and questions

My son recently turned nineteen and has just started work as a tow-truck driver.....I'm soo looking forward to reading about him in the NBR as well one of these days.

Looks Smart reducing his debt before increasing world interest rates take over. good lesson those who use leverage, borrow while low wait for assets to increase as recovery takes hold and sell
its all in the timing

Hey Graeme,when are your staff at carters head office going to return a call or answer the phone?????

Just wondering.

If I were Mr Hart I would cash in/up completely while his assets are worth plenty, he will never ever spend a fraction of it, or his children or for that matter his Grand & Great Grand Children, plus the interest that it will earn will more than likely dwarf any profit returns on the Assets....well done and good onya!!! if times get really tough Graeme just get back behind the wheel!!

Living the NZ

Got a few wrong + 100% recovery

EPC also means Electronic Parts Catalogue, it's also important for our vehicles, generally it is supported with a diagnostic tool for all kinds of auto models and brands.