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Whirlpool, Videocon and Vestel Among Daewoo Bidders
Apr 21, 2006
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South Korean appliance and electronics maker Daewoo Electronics Corp. is on the auction block and attracting bids from around the world. A Seoul, Korea newspaper, the Korea Economic Daily, is quoting unnamed sources saying that 19 companies have placed bids on Daewoo.

This comes after a late-March report from another Korean newspaper said that India's Videocon Industries (Mumbai) was already in the works on a deal to buy the company for about U.S. $113 million.

Appliance companies that are bidding on Daewoo are said to include:

  • Whirlpool Corporation (Benton Harbor, Michigan, U.S.), which recently closed on its acquisition of U.S. appliance producer Maytag
  • Videocon Industries Ltd., which in 2005 bought Electrolux Kelvinator Ltd. (EKL), the India operations of AB Electrolux (Sweden), and the global cathode ray tube (CRT) business of Thomson (Paris)
  • Vestel Elektronik Sanayi Ve Ticaret A.S. of Turkey, maker of white goods and consumer electronics

    The Korea Economic Daily report said Haier Electronics Group Co., the Chinese appliance maker that was an early bidder on Maytag, was expected to bid for Daewoo but did not.

    Other bidders for Daewoo include financial firms, a private equity fund and four Korean companies that were not named.

    Background on Daewoo's Appliance Business
    As APPLIANCE reported on July 21, 2005, the state-run Korea Asset Management Corp. (KAMCO) is eager to sell Daewoo Electronics. The troubled home appliances maker has been in a debt workout program since parent Daewoo Group collapsed under debts of nearly U.S. $80 billion in 1999. KAMCO is a state asset management company and a major shareholder in Daewoo Electronics, once one of Korea's top home appliance makers. Woori Bank, South Korea's second-largest lender, is handling the sale procedure. They have stated their intention to make the sale by September 2006.

    Daewoo has five appliance-producing plants in Korea and has plants in the U.S., the United Kingdom, Spain, Poland, Mexico, China, Vietnam, and Malaysia.

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