Automotive component giant Delphi will be mounting an acquisitions blitz following its partial flotation last week on the New York stock market.
The long-awaited flotation of 17.7% of Delphi stock raised $1.7bn, (£1.04bn) a large part of which will fund a push into the next generation of electronic vehicle controls and mobile multi-media, including internet services.
Other priorities for expansion will be the acquisition of technologies to boost Delphi’s strength in the supply of modular systems and components such as cockpit modules or chassis systems.
Delphi’s UK operations look set to benefit, including its technical centre in Liverpool, which designs electronic control modules for engines. This is expected to gain extra research funding and more engineers.
Paul Fleming, Delphi’s UK director, said the company would continue to invest in its UK manufacturing facilities. These include its instrument clusters and control modules advanced manufacturing centre in Kirby, and its just-in-time module assembly plant, next to Vauxhall’s Astra plant at Ellesmere Port.
Last year Delphi planned to quadruple its UK manufacturing business to nearly £1bn in five years, aiming to widen its business from core customers such as Rover and Vauxhall.
‘We are on target to reach and exceed that figure,’ said Fleming. He said the UK division was now better positioned to develop new business with Ford.
The flotation saw General Motors sell 17.7% of the stock at an initial price of $17 per share. The offer was up to five times oversubscribed.
The remainder of the stock continues to be held by GM, and will either be spun off (given to existing GM shareholders) or split off (exchanged for GM stock, thus reducing GM’s total shareholding in the manner of a share buy-back). A decision will be taken on this later in the year.