Conglomerate Ayala Corp. seeks to expand its car dealership business with a bid to acquire distributorship for Korean automotive brand Kia.
In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange on Wednesday, Ayala said a unit of its wholly-owned subsidiary AC Industrial Technology Holdings Inc. (AC Industrials) had received notice from Kia Motors Asia Regional headquarters that it considered the Ayala group as “the preferred bidder” to start negotiations for the Kia distributorship in the Philippines.
“However, no definitive terms have been reached and we will make the appropriate disclosure of any agreement reached,” the conglomerate said.
Kia sells sedan cars such as Picanto, Rio 5-door as well as sports utility vehicles and mini-vans such as Soul, Sportage and Sorento and Grand Carnival.
In 2016, Ayala consolidated its car dealership and industrial operations into AC Industrials, a wholly-owned subsidiary that seeks to play a bigger role in manufacturing and contribute to the country’s rise into a Southeast Asian industrial hub.
To date, AC Industrials’s car dealership businesses include the Honda, Isuzu, and Volkswagen brands. AC Industrials also holds the existing and future assets of global electronics manufacturing service provider Integrated Micro-Electronics Inc.
Specifically, AC Industrials holds distributorship interests such as the 13 percent stake in Honda Cars Philippines Inc. the 15 percent stake in Isuzu Philippines Corp. and the wholly owned interests in Automobile Central Enterprise Inc., the official Philippine importer and distributor of Volkswagen and in Adventure Cycle Philippines Inc., the official motorcycle distributor of KTM in the Philippines.
Manufacturing operations for KTM AG, the group’s new motorcycle partnership under KTM Asia Motorcycle Manufacturing Inc., are also housed under AC Industrials.
Beyond dealership, the Ayala group has also been in discussions with a handful of potential foreign partners to set up car manufacturing operations in the country in the years ahead.
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