The Italian tyre manufacturer Pirelli is to be sold to the Chinese-state owned ChemChina in a £5.1bn deal.
The move is the latest in a string of takeovers in Italy by cash-rich Chinese buyers and will give ChemChina access to technology to make premium tyres and while providing Pirelli greater access to the Chinese market.
ChemChina’s tyre making unit, China National Tire & Rubber, is to buy the 26.2% stake in Pirelli owned by Italian investment firm Camfin. It will then launch an offer for the remaining shares.
Camfin said the bid would be launched by a consortium controlled by ChemChina but also part-owned by Camfin investors, who include Pirelli boss Marco Tronchetti Provera, Italian banks UniCredit and Intesa Sanpaolo, and Russia’s Rosneft.
Current Pirelli chief executive Tronchetti Provera, who started working for tyre maker in 1986 after marrying a member of the Italian family that founded the firm, will remain in his post.