Bearings sale

Timken is to sell the assets of its needle roller bearings business to Japan’s JTEKT Corporation for $330m in cash.

The Timken Company has signed an agreement to sell the assets of its needle roller bearings business, which primarily serves customers in the automotive original-equipment sector, to Japan’s JTEKT Corporation for $330m (£201m) in cash.

The deal is expected to be completed by the end of December 2009, subject to customary regulatory approvals and certain closing conditions. Proceeds from the sale will provide increased liquidity and be used for general company purposes.

James W Griffith, Timken president and chief executive officer, said: ‘This transaction is a major step forward in our strategy to transform our portfolio to focus on industrial sectors with strong aftermarkets.’

The needle roller bearings business was part of the broader Torrington acquisition Timken made in 2003. The business manufactures highly engineered needle roller bearings, including an extensive range of radial and thrust needle roller bearings, as well as bearing assemblies and loose needles, for automotive and industrial applications.

The business will continue to be managed by the current management team while it is integrated into JTEKT, as the company works to determine the optimum structure for the business within the JTEKT group.

The combined JTEKT/Timken operation will possess an extensive global production network, spanning Asia, North America and Europe, and will serve a global tier-one roster of major automotive and industrial equipment customers.