Further automotive acquisitions for GFG Alliance

Sanjeev Gupta’s GFG Alliance has further consolidated its presence in the automotive sector by acquiring two vehicle components suppliers in France. Through its Liberty industrial business, GFG has become the owner of Lyon-based Saint Jean Industries Poitou and Poitiers-based Fonderie du Poitou Fonte.

As a result of rulings last week by local courts of Administration, GFG is now in a position to commence the implementation of a comprehensive recovery plan for the plants including, a refreshed orderbook, introduction of the LMOS (Liberty Manufacturing Operating System), investments in equipment and improvements in maintenance. The deal will secure the jobs of over 600 staff across both sites which produce a range of components for automotive engine assemblies. The businesses will henceforth be known as Liberty Engineering Poitou, incorporating Liberty Aluminium Technologies Poitou and Liberty Cast Products Poitou.

The acquisitions are an extension of GFG’s strategy for enlarging and diversifying its presence in the French industrial sector and further underline its role as a major industrial player in France. They also allow the Alliance to enact its strategy of acquiring assets that give it a platform to deliver growth in the future of Green Drive Trains, used in electric vehicles, which will require ever increasing amounts of aluminium.

To that end, and in a move towards greater strategic focus and consolidation, the Alliance is looking to mobilise its aluminium and other activities into more globally-oriented business lines, which would of course include the Poitou companies.

These businesses enter the Alliance’s French portfolio alongside France’s second largest vehicle converter Durisotti, France’s only manufacturer of aluminium wheels, now Liberty Wheels France – and Europe’s largest aluminium smelter Liberty Aluminium Dunkerque.

“This is a great day for both companies and for our group,” commented Dr Douglas Dawson, chief executive of Liberty Industries Group. “Moreover, it’s a great result for the workers who I am delighted to be welcoming to the GFG family and growing portfolio of French businesses. We’ve been clear from the outset just how important the French market is for us and the acquisition of these specialist automotive suppliers is strategically very significant as we look to expand first domestically and then further afield while also adding value and safeguarding jobs and skills.

“This clearly expands our market reach and builds on our goal of extending our capabilities as a strategic Tier 1 supplier to the European auto sector. I look forward to visiting both sites shortly and welcoming our new colleagues to our French group of businesses.”

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