Bridgestone sells Sameer share, new technical partnership likely

Bridgestone Corporation has sold its 14.9 per cent share in Sameer Africa Ltd, and the Kenyan tyre maker may have found a new source of technical assistance and support to replace the Japanese firm.

In April this year, Bridgestone disclosed that it no longer wished to provide technical assistance to Sameer Africa, and in response to this decision Sameer Investments Limited (SIL), an investment company in the Sameer Group of Companies, sought to acquire the Japanese tyre maker’s 41.5 million or so shares. According to a statement to shareholders released by Sameer Africa’s Board of Directors on 29 November, SIL sent Sameer, the Capital Markets Authority of Kenya and the Nairobi Securities Exchange a notice of intention to this effect on 29 October. The acquisition of Bridgestone’s 14.9 per cent stake increases SIL’s direct shareholding in Sameer Africa to 72.14 per cent.

The private transfer of Bridgestone’s entire equity interest in Sameer Africa to SIL has been carried out in connection with a new strategic investor that will provide Sameer Africa with technical assistance and support, Board of Directors added. Sameer Africa will nevertheless remain a distributor of Bridgestone tyres. In addition to supplying the Bridgestone brand in Kenya, Sameer Africa manufactures the Yana tyre brand; last year the company produced a total of 277,000 tyres.

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