India’s JBM Auto top contender for controlling stake in SML Isuzu, CNBC-TV18 reports


Bengaluru (Reuters) – India’s JBM Auto (JBMA.NS) is the leading contender to acquire a controlling stake in automaker SML Isuzu (SMLI.NS), CNBC-TV18 reported on Friday, citing sources.

Japan’s Sumitomo Corporation (8053.T), which holds 43% of India-based SML, is looking to exit its operations in India and talks are at an advanced stage, the sources said.

JBM, SML and Sumitomo did not immediately respond to Reuters’ requests for comment.

The report did not mention any other bidders for the stake.

JBM is mulling various options to acquire the shareholding, including cash as well as a share swap deal, the report added.

The sources said that JBM has started a due diligence process, and the deal is likely to value SML at a premium to its current share price.

Shares of SML Isuzu jumped as much as 7.7% after the report but trimmed some gains to close 3.1% higher at 1,154.50 rupees.

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