Sichuan Changhong Electric Co , a Chinese home appliance maker partly owned by Microsoft Corp., will buy a controlling stake in China's biggest compressor manufacturer for 234 million yuan (approx. US$31 million).
Changhong, based in southwestern China's Sichuan province, in August acquired rival Heifei Meiling Co and in June sold a 1% stake to Microsoft as part of an alliance to jointly develop, make and market TVs, computers, and other digital home-entertainment products.
Huayi, which accounts for about one-fourth of China's compressor market, turned a profit of 7 million yuan ($951,000) last year after posting a loss of 142.74 million yuan ($19.4 million) in 2005.
Changhong is buying the stake from Huayi's parent company, Huayi Electrical Appliance General Co., which was ordered by a court to sell part of its shareholding to pay debts linked to the local government of Jingdezhen, in southern China's Jiangxi province, where Huayi is based. (Reuters)